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Biblical peace in troubling times
Peace from a biblical perspective
We live in a troubled world and peace is important not only in a political sense...but also on a personal level because individuals who are void of peace, may handle everyday life on the edge causing a domino effect of stress and depression within personal families, within the workplace and everywhere else where there is personal contact. Peace in a political sense is the absence of war but many people struggle on the inside with their very own personal war. Their minds are in distress because of financial, family and relationship problems to name a few and there seems to be no answers. How to have peace in troubling times will give biblical as well as practical solutions and ideas on how to have peace in a world where there seems to be no answers.
First of all looking at this subject from a biblical perspective, Jesus says in the world you shall have tribulation (trouble) but to be of "good cheer" because I have overcome the world. This gives one hope because first of all he knows what it is like to hurt and to be frustrated when problems begin knocking on one's door. It brings peace just knowing that someone understands , and who better to understand than someone who has been through the same identical problem. A women with a family of 3 children knows how to console a soon to be first time mother, a person who has lost a loved one knows how to show compassion for someone going through the same problem. Just as Jesus overcame the troubles he faced through peace, people are also designed to be channels of peace for others, to give words of kindness and gifts as needed to put a smile on someones face. The biblical Hebrew word for peace is "Shalom"and it is freedom from disturbance whether outwardly as of a nation from war or enemies: or inwardly within the soul (mind will emotions). Many people use do not disturb signs when they want to have peace while working on a project , or just when they want to rest. Peace is that "do not disturb" sign that guards the door of the heart and mind stopping all outside disturbances from gaining entry. Philippians chapter number four and verse six in the bible say's to be careful for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving to let your request be made known unto God and the peace of God that passes all understanding shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds by Christ Jesus. What this means is first of all...not to have any care or anxiety about anything. Have you ever worried about something that when all was said and done, never even happened? This is a common occurrence, that causes physical problems as well as mental because of the stress involved. Instead of care and anxiety people are to pray about the problem, but prayer will only bring peace if one believes in the God they are praying to.Trust in God and his word brings peace because he will cause all things to work together for good (Romans 8:28)
Another meaning of peace is to be silent
Freedom from disturbance from outside forces can be easily detected and simple practical solutions can be administered, some things people may already be doing without knowing bringing peace to their problems such as remaining silent. There are times when remaining silent brings peace, for example one may engage in a heated debate and neither individual wants to keep quiet but they simply want to be the first to get their point across to the other. The problem with this is that getting one's point across does not mean peace has entered, but can allow things to go completely in the opposite direction and cause friendships to end, loss of a job or either loss of a relationship. While Jesus was undergoing some of his most painful moments, he remained silent and his silence kept him in perfect peace while the outside conditions he was facing continued to roar...Isaiah 53 says that he was led as a sheep before his shearers are dumb, but yet he opened not his mouth! remaining silent in some situations is not a sign of weakness, but the pursuing of peace. Everyone has battles of life that must be fought, but only a peaceful person will handle the situations in a peaceful manner which is good for everyone involved. God told Joshua to march around the walls of Jericho for seven days and seven times on the seventh day. They were not to say anything while marching. Think of how foolish they looked to their enemy while going around and around without saying anything.This is a lesson for the Christian today because sometimes the motion of going around and around seeing the same problems, dealing with the same attitudes, not able to make ends meet financially month after month can make one want to scream, but one can remain silent meaning not murmuring and complaining because if God is involved...the walls of trouble will fall down flat at the right time and moment. It is possible to make things worse by speaking harshly or sarcastically and many people who don't have peace, may exemplify that very mistake. The peace of God is different from the peace of men because Gods peace surpasses all human reasoning according to Philippians 4. People cannot understand how one can breeze through a problem with a smile, while someone else void of the peace of God is on the verge of a nervous breakdown with the same exact problem. The difference is the peace of God. Remember that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks...so if a person really has peace and believes God...it will manifest through their speech.
practical tips on resolving conflict
- Making Peace - Tips on Managing Conflict
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Books on peace
pursuit of peace
Many people pursue peace by pursuing things such as money, relationship, position, to name a few, but in reality one will not find peace in things. If the pursuit of things was the answer for peace...why are people so unhappy once they get them? things bring excitement for awhile but then other things are pursued because the excitement wears off, and what happens is one gets caught in a cycle of doing the same thing expecting a different result. Jesus said my peace I give to you not as the world gives give I you, in other words true peace comes from knowing him, and once one knows him...then relationships mean more, money is respected and one will not abuse the position of authority. Matthew 6:33 says to seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you, the question is what things? and the answer is lifes issues, food clothing and shelter. We can be at peace knowing that our heaven father knows what we need in advance, so that peace should allow us to rest in him knowing everything will work out for our good (Romans 8:28). David in 1 Samuel 30 lost his peace along with his men when they came back to the city of Ziklag and found their houses burned with fire and their families taken, and they did what anyone else would do when something precious has been taken away...they wept until they had no more power to weep! people who lose their peace may find it hard to "hold their peace", and the followers of David could no longer hold their peace so they threatened to stone David. What do you do when you've lost your family and possessions and now people who were once willing to follow you now blame you? you encourage yourself in the Lord, in other words don't do anything outside of his will to bring peace to yourself, but find something in his will because this keeps your character intact. Such things as humor (clean) that will make you laugh when you feel like crying, or a friend you can trust to talk to, the ideas are endless, but one must seek peace and pursue it. The next thing that David did was to ask for an Ephod (Priestly garment), this garment was only to be worn by the high priest when going into intercession before God on behalf of another. Because the men that were following David wanted to stone him, he now had to forgive them, and the way to do it was to pray for them. Matthew 5 tells Christians to do the same thing, to pray for them that despitefully use you because if one cannot and does not forgive an enemy, neither will God forgive the Christian, and there is no way peace can be gotten in a situation like that. David then "asks God" , because when a person has gotten their heart right with God...they now have peace to approach God in prayer without feeling guilty or condemned. Philippians 4 says that when one prays, the peace of God which passes all understanding (human reasoning cannot comprehend) shall guard your heart and mind by Christ Jesus. Last but not least David asks God shall I pursue? One may wonder why David did not just go after his family in the first place? in todays society if that happened...one would go to the police to fill out a missing persons report, then have flyers made and posted everywhere...Wait!! all of that must be done but it must be done after one has approached God about it in prayer because he already has the answers one needs, and by doing this a person files the missing report with peace and they place flyers with peace because to pursue without peace can and sometimes does make things worse. God then says pursue... because when a person has made their peace with God they can now pursue because they are now pursuing with peace and just as God told David, for surly thou shall recover all, he tells us the same today!