Devotion #71

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 NIV

In this chaotic world, we need peace. In a world riddled with anxiety-producing news, it is critical to know how to find peace. When our hearts are filled with fear, we will bring that fear into our marriages; but when our hearts know His peace, our marriages and our homes can be a sweet haven from a frenzied world.Jesus came to bring us peace. Many of us know this truth, yet so often, our peace is fleeting. It’s difficult to grab ahold of for any length of time. We may find it at moments, but then something comes along to disrupt our peace and we find ourselves struggling again.

The problem is we’re looking for peace in the wrong places. We’re allowing our earthly situation dictate our peace—this is why our peace is momentary. We want things to go a certain way, and when they don’t, our peace is interrupted. We all have that definition of peace in our minds. For some of us, our peace is determined by our financial status or our relationship status; for some of us peace is determined by our freedom or by our time for leisure; for some of us peace is determined by how much family we have around us or maybe it’s the quiet we need; for some, peace is determined by our health status or by our definition of comfort and security; for some, peace is determined by the mood of our spouse. When these things are all in place according to some predefined script in our minds, we feel at peace. But when those things are out of place, or not going according to plan, our peace is interrupted and we find ourselves struggling.

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. It doesn’t same He came to fix our situation or make things easy for us, it doesn’t say He came to manage things the way we want, it says He came to give us His peace. It doesn’t say our relationships will always work the way we want them to, it doesn’t say we will always feel comfortable or secure, it says we will know His peace—that means despite our circumstances, we should know His peace. His peace is found when we find contentment in our circumstances—exactly as they are. This is where He has you right now—with your spouse, in your house, with your family, in your current financial situation. Stop longing for it to be different, and accept it as it is. Stay here in this moment, and you will find His peace.

One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned walking through trials is this: Life doesn’t have to be perfect to have peace. Everything doesn’t need to go according to my plan to know His peace. It all doesn’t need to be perfect to be beautiful. It’s in my definition of “perfect” that I often to lose my peace.

As a perfectionist, my mind has the tendency to dwell on situations or interactions until I find all the little imperfections and my peace is destroyed. My mind races through conversations and interactions to find better words I could have chosen, moments I could have captured, things I could have done differently. Instead of focusing on the simple beauty of being together as a family, I have a tendency to focus on all the things that could have been done differently and my peace is destroyed. My focus is in the wrong place when I allow that to happen—my peace is being defined by my situation and not by the One who brings me peace.

Life doesn’t have to be perfect to have peace. Life isn’t going to be perfect, but I can still know peace. Jesus says do not let your hearts be troubled. Let it go. Today, I am working on letting all the little imperfections in my life and my interactions with others go, and I am finding HIS perfect peace.

Press on ~ you are loved 💗

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