Peace and Courage and All That Other Stuff

“I have told you all this so that in me you may find peace. In this world you will have trouble. But courage! The victory is mine; I have conquered the world” (Jesus, John 16:33).

Some days it’s easier to believe these words than others. Some days it’s easier to feel that peace of Christ surrounding you and holding you together.

Some days fear wins. Some days you feel overwhelmed and stressed and defeated. You wonder where the peace has gone or if it will ever come back.

The peace never leaves. You may not always tangibly feel it all the time, but it’s there. How do I know that? Because Jesus promised that His peace would remain.

That’s what I’m holding on to these days.  That peace of Christ that passes all understanding, that passes what I can comprehend of my present situation, that stands when I can’t.

It’s like in Voyage of the Dawn Treader when Aslan whispers. “Courage, dear heart,” to Lucy. It says afterwards that she felt a very little bit better. Not a lot. She and the ship weren’t immediately delivered from the darkness, but they began to see a way out on the horizon.

Maybe that’s what it is. Peace is the ultimate knowledge that no matter how bad things are now, God will work all these things out for the best possible outcome. Everything will be fine in the end, as the movie quote goes, and if it’s not fine, it’s not the end.

I don’t necessarily think that peace always comes with a calmness. Sometimes, you can have those butterflies in your stomach, that gnawing in your belly, and still have peace. In the same way, just because you don’t feel the nearness of Jesus doesn’t mean He’s not there.

So that’s where I am, craving that peace and finding it in the unlikeliest of times and places. God is good like that.

 

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