The Secret to living at Peace
Mark 4:35-41 tells the story of Jesus calmly sleeping through a storm that terrified hardened fishermen:
“… A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him!”
That “head on a pillow in every crisis” peace is what I want, how about you? To experience inner calm, whatever the circumstances.
I am too often thrown by conflict, illness, resistance or insecurity. Too often distracted by what is not truly valuable. If I’m being vulnerable and honest, I too often worship the god of the temporary, and take my eyes off the God of the Eternal. I too easily substitute the Everlasting Rock for the shifting sands of humanism. I replace worship with worry and praise with panic.
But I am slowly teaching my soul how to be anchored into the One who does not shift, whose Word is immovable, whose promises are unchangeable, who is incapable of lying and will never grow weary. He can never be defeated, discouraged, despondent or disillusioned. His energy cannot run out, His wisdom will never be confused and His love for me will never waver.
He consistently covers my yesterdays in mercy, my today in grace and my tomorrows in hope. As I focus and the view of Him becomes clearer, I see it is not some light sprinkling of divine kindness that I had imagined He would give. No, when my heart is truly lost in Him I see His glory arrive on my shores like mighty, unconquerable ocean swells of unquenchable love. Like a raging sea breaking over my brokenness, breaching my weaknesses, invading my failure, and embracing my future with a beautiful, obsessive passion for this little man that I am. His love shouts, it dances, it hugs, it kisses, it laughs, it lifts. He seems unashamed of me, though I am often ashamed of myself. What a God! What salvation! What great grace! What a tsunami of weighty glory awaits those who begin to set their worshipful gaze upon Him!
Do you, like me, want to anchor your soul to such a kind Father, a wise Shepherd, a patient Teacher and a strong Counsellor?
But not simply to have Him near you, but have His strength WITHIN you and UPON you? To not only read His thoughts in scripture (though that is divine!), but to hear His heart beat, catch His whispers, feel His breath. To have Him crown you with glory and honour, and turn your weakness into strength, your foolishness to wisdom, your poverty to riches!
Well here is what He is teaching me about how to fill my life with His strength every day, resulting in resilience, long suffering, stability and “Head on a pillow” peace in every circumstance:
“What you Focus on Grows”
It is a simple fact of life, that what you focus on will grow. Focus on skills and they’ll develop. Focus on failure, you’ll end up getting more of it! Ride a bicycle looking backwards, you’ll crash.
Look intently at God in His presence and His Word… can you guess what happens? … Calm, beautiful, awe inspired, mouth wide-open, heart-overwhelming peace, will flood our souls. Our minds will exchange fear for faith. Our emotions will give up stress and embrace rest. Our will softens. Our resolve deepens. Our worship stirs from deep inner recesses of spiritual potency, unlocked like the opening of flood gates. We feel truly, divinely, at peace and loved.
An extract from my book STRONGER. Find out more HERE.