Now I know you’re kidding …
Give to God … my PEACE?
Oh, yes, my friends. My dear friends. I’m pretty sure I heard correctly. Let me know what you think. I believe that our God and Father, our Lord Jesus Christ, would be overjoyed to receive from us this Christmas season …
This request engendered thought, as you can well imagine, but it did not take long for me to realize that my peace is predicated upon circumstances, sensory perceptions, the approval and the beneficence of others, and sometimes, above all and worse than all … this thing I like to call, undisturbedness!
That is not an original thought. I heard a great teaching one time by a man named Doug Lambert who spent some time listing some of the “giants” in the land of post-modern Christian souls. From a large compilation, he narrowed his finding down to a composite number, but there was this one that he could not quite identify. He knew it was there, in the hearts and lives of people he knew, even in himself, but what was it? Did it have a name?
It did, and he called it Giant Undisturbed. It is that possessor of territory in us that leaves us alone as long as it is left alone, to veg out, to guard down time more jealously than our time with the Lord or with loved ones, to decide IF and WHEN we will get up and get going, especially in places where we would rather not give of ourselves in the first place.
If it raises its slovenly head, it is only to say, “I DESERVE a little peace and quiet!”
Assuredly, it can be a cover up for feelings of inadequacy, but more often it is a little root of bitterness, and it is more stubborn in its refusal to be dislodged than a blackberry vine, and even more thorny. It’s passivity is more dangerous than a bad temper.
Before we all run screaming from the room, for almost all of us have met this shady, unassuming interloper, this is a gift exchange. We give to God OUR PEACE, our phony, conditioned, manufactured peace, and He gives to us His own. When you have experienced it you can say in all truth, that is surpasses understanding. It’s just there, when all should be overwhelming, even frightening. It does not come and go, and it certainly does not have to be buried into an overstuffed chair in order to be peaceful.
The Lord’s peace will mount a garrison against turmoil, fear, jealousy, and even persecution. His peace doesn’t sink down into a warm corner and defy us to jostle it; the Lord’s peace stands tall and tells intruders to fall back, for He will keep us in perfect peace, for our minds are stayed on Him, trusting Him. (Isaiah 26:3). His peace provokes trust rather than becoming provoked every time we need to exercise our faith.
His peace has been bequeathed to us, and not as the world gives it. It is His gift to us, and in it we can discover the full measure of a Merry Christmas, not dependent upon anything more than that a virgin did indeed give birth to a Son, and they called His Name Jesus, and He did as the prophet said, He saved His people from their sins …
Even their false, unstable, synthetic, and selfish peace.
“This dog is comfy” – Austurges, by permission, Wikipedia