It can be really hard to find “peace” sometimes. Aside from all the chaos in the world, life is busy, distractions abound, to-do lists keep growing, worries are ever present, health issues crop up, there never seems to be enough time for peace… However, the absence of all these things is not what is being suggested as the peace of God. Life will always be full of trouble as well as good.
The passage from Philippians suggests that anxiety is the opposite of the peace of God; a disquieting, distracting worry about the cares of this life which disrupts our sleep and stops us from enjoying all the good that God has given to us.
“For anxious fear so concentrates a man’s thoughts on himself that he can serve no one else.” H.E. Fosdick
True peace in the heart comes from:
- Faith that God sent Jesus to reconcile us to Himself.
- That all things work together for good to those who love God even if it is hardship.
- That there is hope for the future and it is worth waiting for.
One of the best examples of this attitude is found a few verses later in Philippians 4:11-13: “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
This peace is not something that is necessarily found right away – it grows as we find that faith in God brings about confidence in Him.
Luke 1:79 tells us that Jesus came “to guide our feet into the way of peace.” So then, in the sense that peace is something that can grow in our minds, we can say the birth of Christ did bring peace to the earth.
“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts You.” Isaiah 26:3