“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace….” Galatians 5:22
Today, we will touch on the fruit of “peace.”
In our world today, there is so much troubling news, not only in other countries, but in our own country. It can get a bit scary, can’t it? Heartache is at every corner it seems. Some of the most tragic situations are occurring. Sometimes these tragic things happen to us or to someone that we know and love. Have you ever met someone who has been through a hard time in their life and yet, they seem to have a peace about them. Yes, they are hurt and devastated, but there is still something about them that you can see that is a bit different. It is called peace. Peace that only can come from our Heavenly Father.
I asked a sweet friend, Shawnna, who I met several years ago at church, to share her story. Shawnna lost her precious daughter suddenly only two weeks ago. Shawnna knows where her peace comes from. She is a beautiful testimony of the grace of God.
When hard times hit, may we know and display this kind of peace.
Thank you, Shawnna, for sharing with us and encouraging others even when you have been through one of the hardest things for a parent to go through.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
On Tuesday morning, March 24th, my world changed forever. I received a phone call that my 42-year old daughter had passed away. I was in the parking lot of a grocery store loading groceries, when I received the most horrific news I would ever hear in my life. I don’t think I even made a sound, but 4 women who were loading their own groceries, or gathering baskets from the parking lot immediately circled me, asked if they could pray, and just stood around me praying over me as I talked on the phone hearing all the details as to what had happened to my beautiful daughter. God went before me, placing these four Angels there to be His hands and feet and extending grace in such an amazing way. Over the next several days, as we had to make so many decisions, I had no strength but, I always had peace. Peace that only God could give. When I would feel myself loosing all control, God would give me another “God moment”. I came to a place that all I had to do was say I need a God moment and He would provide one. My peace would return. My God moments were things like receiving verses from friends through texts, people that God would place in my path at particular moments, or silly things like seeing my grandsons name written on the side of a truck. My list is pages long and it has only been two weeks since that phone call. God’s peace is with me as long as I keep my eyes vertical and not on the circumstances around me. I keep my eyes looking up to Him, knowing He has me in the palm of His hand
My peace comes from knowing that God is good all the time, all the time God is good.
None of us are exempt from suffering, loneliness, discouragement, unjust criticism, or death, because God is developing within us the character of Christ, and, in order to do this, he must take us through all of the circumstances in life through which he took Christ.
Does this mean God causes tragedies? No. God is good, and he will not cause evil or do evil. But God can use dark and stressful times for good. He’ll use them to teach us to trust him, to show us how to help others, and to draw us closer to Him.
“We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we are expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-9
Thank you, Shawnna, for sharing your story with us. We will continue to pray for you!
When things are getting rough, ask the Lord to give you peace in the situation. Several years ago, I went through a situation where I was deeply hurt. Hurt by some that I considered my friends for life. I looked up and admired them as a young teen until this happened. I had a choice; I either could get upset, mad and give up. Or, I could look up and give it all to the Lord and when I did, He gave me a peace that assured me He was with me and my family and wouldn’t leave me. Granted, it was hard and those feelings still pop out every now and then and once again, I give it back to Him. I learned some very valuable and serious lessons through all of that and how thankful I am to have the peace that passes all understanding. What is it in your life that you need to give back to God and rest in His peace?