Dear Ministry Partner,
In our fast-moving world, peace of mind has become a prized commodity. Oftentimes, we may find ourselves longing for a retreat to a quiet spot in the beach or park amid the hustle and bustle of a stress-filled world. However, the anxiety we bear as we undertake various responsibilities in life, such as caring for our children and aging parents and meeting deadlines at the office, often shatters any semblance of peace we have.
In order to have peace of mind, we must have peace with God and the peace of God.
Peace with God refers to our standing before God. In Romans 5:1, Paul writes, “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Christ’s death on the cross has restored our relationship with God and we no longer live in fear of God. As His children, we can call God Abba Father.
Yet, this peace with God can be broken when we have unconfessed sin. Sin short-circuits and creates a barrier in our relationship with God. David felt the heavy hand of God upon him when he harboured sin in his life (Psalm 32 & 51).
God is ever merciful and gracious to forgive our sins when we come clean with Him. To restore our peace with God, we need to confess our sins. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9
Peace of God refers to our state of being (or mind) when we trust in God. The anxieties we carry can often rob us of God’s peace when we focus on our human frailties and rely on our limited understanding to solve problems. The apostle Paul writes:
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” – Philippians 4: 6-9 (NIV)
When we surrender our troubled hearts to God, and dwell on His goodness and character, He gives us the peace we need to face life’s challenges.
“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” – Isaiah 26: 3 (NLT)
Lam Kok Hiang
Illustration by PATRICK NG