I Was Just Thinking About - PEACE AMID CHAOS.
We ordinarily do not attach the word “peace” with the word “chaos”! We like to think that life in Christ will always know His presence with us and love, joy and peace always being part of who and what we are in Him. However, in John 16:33, as Jesus prepared His disciples for life in a hostile world, He shared: “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” Here Jesus associates “peace” and “tribulation” as part of the life experience that is our expectation and reality. One of the ways by which the child of God copes with this is the embrace of John 14:1-2, 27 and rejoicing in the word of Jesus: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
In 1914, I think Oswald J. Smith captured this truth when he wrote the words to the Hymn, Deeper and Deeper. Each stanza emphasizes where one should be in his/her relationship with Jesus Christ: “Into the heat of Jesus…Into the will of Jesus…Into the cross of Jesus…” When he penned Stanza 4, he wrote: “Into the joy of Jesus, Deeper and deeper I go…Joy in the place of sorrow, peace in the midst of pain, Jesus will give…He will uphold and sustain.” In 1893, Horatio G. Spafford wrote a Hymn after two major chaotic experiences in his life: (1) The vast Chicago Fire in 1871 that ruined most business men financially, and (2) The death of his four daughters who died in collision with other ship as they crossed the Atlantic. After receiving a telegram from his survivor wife that stated, “Saved Alone” he went on to write: “When peace like a river, attended my way; when sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say: It is well, It is well with my soul.”
Most of us would love for Philippians 4:6-7 to be the ongoing reality for and of our lives: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heats and your minds in Christ Jesus.” When the unexpected events occur in one’s life, we sometimes forget this great truth and reality that belongs to the child of God - “Joy in the place of sorrow, peace in the midst of pain”! Jesus has given this peace as a gift and also as a vital part of the fruit of the Spirit. It is so easy to think to oneself that this is where one is and how one responds to the experiences and travails of life. We need to be guarded and focused lest the enemy of pour souls diverts our attention off of Jesus and these truths that are centered in Him alone. Let us center our focus on Jesus only and always and not upon the unexpected and chaotic. This Peace, Jesus will give.
Prayerfully - consider these things with me.