Peace doesn’t come as easily today as it used to when I was a kid. The older I get, the more responsibility I accumulate. Responsibility isn’t bad but it can be heavy.
Responsibility isn’t the only thing we carry. We carry baggage from the past, the constant intake of social media, and many other things that can cause our minds to feel full. A full mind can cause both physical and mental disorders.
A heavy mind is a consequence of the fall of man. We try to hold all the things together because we chose, and still choose, to be our own gods. We have a desire to do things our own way and we are paying dearly for it. Having to steer our own lives with our limited view isn’t a blessing, it’s a consequence of our rebellion.
In Romans 12:2, the Bible talks about offering our bodies up as a living sacrifice, which is the only reasonable response to the Gospel. The first thing it says to do as a sacrifice is to be renewed in your thinking. Adam and Eve set a precedence of taking God out of man’s reasoning but the Gospel of Jesus does the very opposite.
Because of Jesus, we can now reverse the curse and no longer be stuck with the weight of rebellion. We can be at peace with God. And our thinking has a major impact on sustaining the peace that comes from God. God gives it but we can protect it.
Here are a couple of things to practice if you are hoping to sustain a peaceful state. This isn’t an exhaustive list but a few insights of wisdom.
- Clear Your Conscience- This is the beginning of having a relationship with the Holy Spirit. As a Christian, the Holy Spirit is the guide who leads us in true transformation. Having a relationship with the Holy Spirit takes time, mostly because we are learning the language of God, which is a renewing of our mind. God’s language is not like ours; His ways are higher. His truth is powerful but sometimes we are not in a place where we understand how to respond to it. So, just like any good dad, God gets on our level and speaks our language. He begins speaking to you in your conscience. And when we respond, we begin to uncover the sound of His voice. So, if today you have a desire to respond to God, start with responding to your conscience. Make things right, do the right things, and humble yourself.
- Guard your mouth- The Bible says the mouth/tongue has the power to bring life and death. The book of James says the tongue is filled with the power to set your entire life on fire, and not just any fire, but the fire of Hell. I think you get the point. The mouth unleashed can be a devastating thing to your life. Be careful what and how you speak – the things that you say about others and the things you say about yourself. As much as the tongue can be destructive, it can also be the thing that establishes God’s Kingdom in your life. With our mouths, we praise God and these praises actually enthrone God (Psalm 121). Guard your mouth and refuse to be an advocate for the tactics of Hell.
- Last but not least, guard your eyes. This is practical advice but also endorsed by the Gospel of Jesus. Jesus said that the eye is the lamp to the body. If it is good the entire body is good. This is to make the point that what we intake can affect our internals. Take a break from the news and stay off social media once in a while. It’s good for the eyes to rest from all the evil that is in this world. Focus on things that are pure and lovely (Philippians 4:8). Where your focus lies will determine your next step. Keep your vision as clear as possible and you will discover that some of the things you deal with are caused by the pollution of what you take in.
If you have lost your peace, you can find it again. God actually wants to give you peace and the greatest peace isn’t built from a “how to” list. It’s found in His presence. Join us Sunday or during the week and worship the Giver of peace.
Chad Fagundes is Men’s and Outreach Pastor at Koinonia Church in Hanford, CA. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 559-582-1528.