I BELIEVE WE would all agree that we are living in chaotic days. When we read God’s Word, it would seem we are in the days that Paul described to Timothy.
Second Timothy 3:1–4 (NLT) says, “You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.”
In navigating through this season, it is easy to stay in a state of turmoil, frustration, and fear. When you watch the news or get on social media, you witness people bickering and being intolerant of others. Adverse weather conditions are reported somewhere in the world on a daily basis. And, of course, the rising cost of everything causes us to adjust and reevaluate our budgets.
We do not realize that all the information we acquire daily can keep our minds in a state of unrest, even if the news does not directly affect us. Our thoughts can cause us to become depressed. God does not want us to live in that state of mind. One of the things I cherish is living a peaceful life. It is difficult to navigate life or make proper decisions when we are not experiencing peace.
What is perfect peace? It is a condition of freedom from disturbance within the soul.
A scripture I refer to often is Isaiah 26:3, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” The New Living Translation says it this way, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!”
We do not have a lot of trouble with our thoughts when everything is going well. But when things around us are being shaken on a daily basis, the enemy tries to invade our thought life. The Holy Spirit is a gentleman and gently whispers to us. Satan hollers in our ears and enhances our thoughts.
In these days, it is important to keep our minds focused on God. He is the one Who will keep us in perfect peace. What is perfect peace? It is a condition of freedom from disturbance within the soul. You may wonder how we can keep our minds constantly on God.
I have shared this in previous columns, but it bears repeating. Being raised in a pastor’s home, we faced many circumstances that could rob us of peace. I found, even as a teenager, that worship music kept my mind focused on the Lord and not on the situation at hand.
Years ago, before cassette tapes, 8-tracks, CDs, and MP3s were vinyl records. I had a record player with a stack of records that would play the entire day. And I played them 24 hours a day! I wanted Craig and Denise to constantly be filled with faith-building songs.
Many children came over to our house to play with Craig and Denise. Because of the peaceful music, they did not fuss or fight with each other. In fact, my neighbor once asked me what kind of music I played at my house. She said, “My son comes home so peaceful and singing unfamiliar songs.”
I still surround myself with worship music. It plays in our house constantly, even when we are not at home. When I am in a hotel, my music is playing in our room constantly.
With modern technology, I have playlists. I listen to some songs while I’m sleeping and others when I’m awake. I have playlists for various situations that I’m dealing with. If I am tempted to worry about something, I listen to “Not Gonna Worry” by the Gaither Vocal Band. Part of the lyrics go, “I’m not gonna worry, I’m not gonna fret. He’s got the whole thing in His hands.” I encourage you to surround yourself with worship music that ministers to you.
God is always there to minister peace in every situation. When Jesus was leaving this earth, He gave the disciples a word that is still good for us today. John 14:27 (NLT) “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” I encourage you to accept God’s gift of peace.
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