Thursday, January 15, 2009

Peace, Perfect Peace

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6,7)

Last night I was contemplating the concept of peace, the "peace that passes all understanding". I've always thought of that passage in terms of the peace being illogical by the world's view. In other words, we can have peace despite the troubles we encounter, which is a concept that those without Christ find hard to grasp.

However, last night I saw this passage from another angle. Perhaps this also means that the importance of having peace will transcend or pass that of having understanding. This was one of those "A ha!" moments for me because I pray much more often for answers and understanding than I do for peace.

I enjoy watching TV shows and movies that deal with mysteries, and reading mystery novels as well. I like trying to solve the mystery myself before the show or book come to an end, playing my own version of Sherlock Holmes. But when it comes to dealing with the mysteries of my own life, that often leads to frustration rather than entertainment. Those mysteries aren't neatly wrapped up in an hour's time or within 300 pages. I can't count the number of times I've prayed for insight and understanding and clarity about certain matters. Sometimes God has given them, and many times He's still keeping things a mystery. But I'm beginning to let go of the need to know so much and value peace more.

I may have answers and know what's going to happen, but that doesn't assure me that I'll be at peace about it. (Indeed, it may be one of God's greatest mercies that He withholds knowledge at times from us.) I'm seeing that peace is a greater gift than knowledge of what's happening or going to happen in our lives.


That Girl said...

I consistently pray for peace and calmness.

Kelley said...

Peace and there's a concept to ponder huh?