Peace depends entirely on security, doesn’t it?
I can be at total rest in my bed and night, without a care in the world. But when I think I hear something on the other side of the house – peace is the last thing on my mind. Until I bravely walk out into the darkness of the family room to check on things (to verify that things are secure), I likely won’t get a wink of shut-eye.
People do all sorts of things to maintain a sense of security: I even know of a woman who used to sleep with a baseball bat in case of intruders!
The frustrating thing about life on earth is that despite our attempts at feeling safe, nothing really is. Even if it’s encrypted, locked, hidden and password-protected, it’s still at risk. At best, enough safeguards and money might give me a “feeling” of security, but never a guarantee.
Alarms can be disabled, systems can be hacked, money can disappear, the weather can get ugly, protections can fail – I could spend the rest of my life worried and afraid of what might happen. Or, I can turn to the one Person that offers complete personal and eternal security.
Consider the words of Jesus: “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand.” (John 10:27-29, NIV).
That’s an interesting metaphor: sheep. Sheep are probably some of the dumbest animals God ever had the pleasure of creating; they’ll wander off from the flock without realizing their grave danger. The shepherd, then, is charged with their protection and provision. The sheep go on with their activities day-to-day, having no idea of what their shepherd does to protect them.
Sometimes we humans are the same way. We wander into situations that are highly dangerous, and sometimes, we may not even realize when our Good Shepherd rescues us. But that’s the beauty of following Him. The Bible speaks of a “peace that is beyond understanding” available to those who trust in God. It’s the peace of knowing that even if the worst should happen, I still can count on Him to fulfill His promises to me. It’s the security of knowing that even when this life is over, I can spend eternity with God in heaven.
If you live a life of worry and stress, the promises of God may be the only lasting remedy. He says, “I will never leave you or forsake you.” He says, “No one can snatch you out of my hand.” He says, “I can even work out the bad things in life for your ultimate good.”
Real peace comes when you have the most power on your side, “peace through strength.” Think of it: the Creator of the universe is promising to keep you securely in His hand, as long as you hear His voice and follow Him. Could you ask for more security than that?
I wish there were some sort of promise that we’ll never experience pain or loss. But God never promises that. What He does guarantee is that He’ll walk with us throughout life, no matter how difficult it gets.
God is with us. God knows what we’re going through. God cares more for us than we can imagine.
In the words of the apostle Paul: “I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)