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Northview Blog The Peace Of Christ

December 8, 2020

The Peace Of Christ
“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must also forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” (Colossians 3:12-15)

For many, the upcoming holiday season means spending treasured time with family, partaking in Christmas traditions passed down over the years and joyously watching loved ones open gifts. However, for many others, the holidays can mean sadness, loneliness, stress and anxiety. So how do we find the peace of Christ?

The Oxford Dictionary defines peace as “freedom from anxiety, disturbance (emotional, mental or spiritual), or inner conflict; calm, tranquility.” I don’t think there’s ever been a holiday season where I was free from anxiety or disturbances or felt calm or tranquil. But just because my life circumstances are hectic and stressful doesn’t mean I can’t rest in the peace Christ has to offer.

Paul tells us in Colossians 3:15, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.” Most biblical scholars agree Colossians was one of the letters Paul wrote while imprisoned in Rome. Think about that—Paul wrote about letting the peace of Christ rule in our hearts while he was sitting in a prison cell! If there was ever a pretty good excuse to not feel at peace, Paul had it.

Then look at what he wrote immediately afterward: “And be thankful.” Northview’s Anxious for Nothing series taught us that having a heart of thanksgiving helps us be less anxious. And as we become less anxious, we’re able to rest in the peace He alone can give us. Having thanksgiving, or gratitude, is recognizing that everything we have is a gift from God.

One of my favorite hymns is Frances Ridley Havergal’s “Take My Life.” She writes, “Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to thee. Take my moments and my days; let them flow in endless praise.”

Imagine the peace we could experience if we lifted up every day and every moment to God with praise, thanking Him for what we have. We could probably start to understand how Paul could write about peace while locked away in prison, or how Jesus could go willingly to His death on a cross, knowing He must bear the weight and pain of all our sins.

If the holidays are a hard time for you, know that you’re not alone. But also remind yourself of all you have to be thankful for and praise God for it, and He can give you peace to rule your heart.

by Mercedes Thomas

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