Category: PEACE


Delete the Past

“I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”
(Philippians 3:13, 14 NLT)

My smart phone’s ability to process new information has really declined lately because the memory space has been completely used up with pictures. These photo images of the past are limiting the joyful experience of taking new photos. My smart phone’s problem reminds me that we often have to delete previous mind sets from the past in order to move forward fully engaged in the blessings that God has prepared for us in the future. Frequently dwelling on past negative events is not good for our mental health. Researchers at Ohio State University have found that just thinking about stressful experiences actually increases inflammation in the body and chronic levels of inflammation can lead to depression (1) The Bible tells us to forget about the past and look forward to our heavenly future with Christ Jesus. So let’s think forward and delete the past.

(1) http://www.healthline.com/health-news/mental-dwelling-on-stressful-events-increases-inflammation-031813

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Stop and Rest

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
(Matthew 11:28 NLT)

Many people have experienced the feeling of being overwhelmed at work with insufficient staffing and this sets the stage for a work related injury. Work related repetitive motion injuries are recognized as the leading cause of employee suffering and decreased productivity.(1) Body tissues wear out with excessive strain, insufficient rest and inadequate nutrition. The first approach to treatment of a repetitive work injury is resting to avoid the aggravating activities. Workers in the Kingdom of God are the believers that make up the body of Christ which is his Church.(1 Cor 12:12) The believers work hard to deliver the Gospel for the global harvest of souls but the Bible says that harvest is great and the workers are few.(Matt 11:28) Care must be taken to prevent injuries from the repetitive trauma of this important work. Coming to rest in the refreshing presence of God and feeding on the spiritual nutrition of his Word restores us for another work day.

1)http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/diseases/rmirsi.html

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Mountain Whispers

The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.
(1 Kings 19:11, 12 NIV)

Some people may wait for God to appear in a dramatic way but his voice is usually very subtle and easily missed if our ears are not listening for him. In this Biblical passage Elijah the prophet did not hear God’s voice in the violent wind, earthquake or fire but in a gentle whisper. We may have to pass through some of life’s natural disasters but God brings us up to his mountain of protection. Instead of fearing life’s uncontrollable circumstances listen for the gentle mountain whisper of God’s instruction that encourages us in the midst of the chaos.

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Immovable Confidence

“For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.”
(Ephesians 6:15 NLT)

I can remember once playing soccer with the wrong athletic footwear. My shoes did not have cleats and my confidence was ruined because I frequently slipped and fell to the ground. In ancient times the Roman military shoe had nails imbedded in the tread for improved traction on slippery surfaces during times of war. The soldiers could fearlessly stand firm with immovable confidence to fight the enemy without doubting their base of support. We are living in a war and many people do not even realize it. The battle is a spiritual one for our souls. In our lives fear causes us to slip and fall into doubt but putting our faith in the Good News of Jesus Christ gives us immovable confidence with peaceful assurance of our eternal salvation in him.

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No Longer Afraid

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise— in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?”
(Psalm 56:3, 4 NIV)

Little children are afraid of the dark and cry about every unexplained noise as they run towards the security of their parents. When the child grows older their understanding improves with regard to life’s circumstances and they are no longer afraid. Like little children new believers in Christ may be fearful of every unexplained problem that arises and tearfully run to God for security. With spiritual maturity comes understanding. Understanding the truth of the Bible liberates believers to live without fear trusting in the promises of God’s Holy Word.

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Case Closed!

“You, Lord, took up my case; you redeemed my life.”
(Lamentations 3:58 NIV)

It is always a terrible feeling to be accused of something that you did not do. The motive behind making an accusation is to create a guilty conviction. Satan is called the “accuser” because he continually makes false accusations to oppress the people of God with guilt.(Rev 12:10) Satan’s plan is to stimulate guilty feelings about sins already forgiven with the motive of creating doubt in the finished work of Christ Jesus who died a substitutionary death as payment for the sins of the entire world. Putting our trust in the Lord Jesus and confessing our sins to him in sincere repentance forever releases us from the bondage of guilt. We have complete peace with God knowing that our sins have been forgiven through Christ Jesus so when in doubt confess them out. Case closed!

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The Greatest Peacemaker

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”
(Matthew 5:9 NIV)

You may have recognized from my accent that I am Canadian. Canada is a country not known for its military victories but for its peacemaking efforts. “Canada is known throughout the world for it’s readiness to contribute troops or to peace keeping missions and has participated in more missions then any other country in the world.”(1) “Canada’s peacekeeping contributions have come at a great cost. More than 275 Canadians have died in such efforts in Afghanistan and around the world in the post-war years, and many more have been wounded, returning home with injuries to body and mind that can last a lifetime.”(2) God loves all those who work for peace because peacemakers make personal sacrifices to love others. The greatest peacemaker is the Lord Jesus Christ himself who sacrificed his life for the sins of the entire world so that whoever trusts in him can have peace with God.

1)http://www.canadahistory.com/sections/war/Peace%20Keepers/peacekeeping.html
2)http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/teach_resources/peacefact

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Hold My Hand

“For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’”
(Isaiah 41:13 NKJV)

I remember my first day of kindergarten clearly. It was the first time I was without my parents. What stands out in my mind the most was that there was another child crying his eyes out the entire day screaming for his mother. The child was experiencing separation anxiety from his parents. Unfamiliar territory can create fear in the heart of a child. Upon hearing the child’s distress a loving family member relieves their anxiety by coming close to hold their hand. God loves us as a perfect father and does not want us to be afraid. As believers in Christ we become children of the Living God (Romans 9:26) and although life’s fearful circumstances will come the God of peace is close enough to hold our hand.

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The Right Company

“Stay away from fools, for you won’t find knowledge on their lips.”
(Proverbs 14:7 NLT)

Recently I went out for dinner with my fiancée Ismari. It was a beautiful warm sunny day so we chose a nice restaurant with an outdoor patio. The ambiance was very peaceful with soft music playing. The food was great with appetizers, bread, soup, salad and a delicious main entrée. Our conversation was delightful in joyful fellowship. It was one of those dates where everything just seemed to go perfectly smooth until some uninvited dinner friends showed up to bother us. Several flies decided to attack us. We had to continually swat at the insects throughout the meal to keep them away. Imagine attempting to enjoy a nice dinner with a loved one but some flies ruin the atmosphere pestering you while you eat. Imagine spending time with the Lord Jesus prayerfully feeding on his Word but the wrong company continually interrupts your thoughts. Bad company corrupts good character. (1 Cor 15:33) Anyone that does not bring you closer to Jesus will only lead you further away. Choose your friends wisely.

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Social Media Relationships

“Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” He was even called the friend of God.”
(James 2:23 NLT)

Everyone wants to be popular and have many friends. In the digital world it’s easy to socialize by adding a friend or following a celebrity but quality relationships take time to develop. “A new survey from consumer and business credit reporting company Experian found Americans spend on average, 16 minutes of every hour spent online on social networking sites.”(1) Another survey found that the total time spent in prayer for an entire year was only 6 hours.(2) We develop a personal relationship with the Lord by initiating dialogue which is called prayer. People spend more time socializing with electronic media friends then with the One who created the very context that we use to socialize. God wants to be our friend but do we want to be his friend?

1)http://www.foxbusiness.com/personal-finance/2013/04/26/social-media-addiction-study/#ixzz2WEdglY7v
2)http://jameshartlinereport.blogspot.com/2010/03/2009-statistics-for-average-american.html?m=1

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