Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Depart from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it. Psalm 34:14
I’ve recently discovered my word for 2011! At the beginning of the year on K-Love they spoke about picking a word- in place of a “resolution”; to be your “focus” for the year- for awhile I struggled with it but I couldn’t decide what word God wanted me to use- so I said “maybe God doesn’t want me to choose one word” and I left it at that…until I realized God had picked a word for me…..PEACE
“Now think for a moment about the meaning of this word “peace”. Does it seem strange that angels should have announced Peace, when ceaselessly the world has been stricken with War and the fear of War? Does it seem to you the angelic voices were mistaken, and that the promise was a disappointment and a cheat?” T.S. Eliot Murder in the Cathedral from the quote at the beginning of the book I’m reading now, (“Seeking Peace” by Johann Christoph Arnold)
In my post about Heaven, "The Never Ending Story" (January 28, 2011) I said that this “Peace on earth” (Luke 2) Christ came to give is not the absence of war (at least right now), it’s a peace with God which passes understanding. (Phil. 4:7) It’s Christ who died on the cross so we can go to heaven and experience a life without pain and suffering, war and death!
Jesus said in Matthew 10:34 "Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”
And in John 16:33, He says,
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
How Ironic; In the midst of a “war” within my soul came the last day of school and the party- I had asked Lyd’s teacher (during it), if I could say the “One Minute Sermon” for them (they had heard it before) and she said, “No” (Could offend the parents present) I simply said, “OK” (in the past this would have “set me off”) I still was able to say it for a few of the kids after the parents were gone.
Then getting ready to leave with my posse (Lydia, Brooke & Kamari) and Brooke has to say “bye” to Ms. Randall, meanwhile Kamari is back at Ms. William's (Lyd and Kamari’s teacher) class and has started wiping down the chalkboards----And I’m fighting a losing “diet” battle and eating Brooke’s delicious lemon bars (Mom used to make these!) wondering “How long are we staying here? I have to pick up Claire @ 4:00 pm” Then we all start cleaning, moving desks etc. I ended up back in Ms. Williams class “Isn’t Kamari done yet?” I was thinking, well, no, so Ms. Williams starts talking about me coming to read and play my flute, which I’ve been doing throughout the year (usually every other week) and I can’t believe my ears, wait I’m annoyed with her, right? No way! She says, “You can tell when someone’s ‘anointed’ (This is a word Joyce Meyer uses frequently and it means you are walking in the power of God’s Holy Spirit!) You had this peace on you when you came in the room…” And she also said I was a "blessing" - What!? This was the best compliment I could ever receive! Better than the one I received the month before…way better! So I beamed “Thank-you…that means a lot to me!” I was so glad I didn’t do what I wanted to do; I was thinking, “Come on, girls! Schools out for summer, lets ditch this place!” So, I started telling Ms. Williams how often that word (PEACE) has been coming up lately; First, Lydia and her best friend, Brooke were obsessed with Peace signs! They had them on shirts, purses, Jewelry, book-bags and this has gone on for over a year now.
On my Joyce Meyer CDs, that were not specifically about, “peace”, she kept talking about how she’s so much more peaceful than she used to be. I have a similar personality to Joyce’s- that’s why I can relate to her so. She was, as I was very “tempest tossed” like a verse I heard from Isaiah.
I decided to memorize Psalm 34 a while ago, one verse says, “Seek peace and pursue it” The “Made to Crave” blog by Lysa Terkeurst I was reading had a post about, “choosing peace” instead of overindulgence (i.e. guilt and shame), I thought, “Wow, I never thought of it like that” The verse she used; Psalm 34:14!
Then the verse was on my Mother’s Day gift!
Bob found this for me at Good Will for Mother's Day! Well, that means he didn't go looking for a candle thing with my verse on it. (Bob DID NOT even know I was “stuck” or “focused” on this verse! But he knew I LOVE candles) He just found this! Cool, huh? I think so! Funny thing though it says, "Proverbs 34:14" it's "Psalms" not "Proverbs" perhaps that's why it was at Good Will? idk and I don't care! I Love it!
This (peace sign) was out with some "Spring" stuff at Dollar General where Lydia, Brooke and I would go every Wed to get snacks for Scrap-booking- it was the last one! All three of us wanted it- but I saw it first! :-)
“There are two mighty forces at work in each of us, evil and good, and in the battle between them we are judged and forgiven over and over. It is in this-in the ongoing fight- that we experience true peace.” Glenn Swinger from, “Seeking Peace” by Johann Christoph Arnold. Arnold continues; “Glenn’s observation is crucial to understanding the paradox above, “I came not to bring peace, but a sword,” for it touches on it’s deepest meaning. Christ’s sword is His truth, and we must allow it to cut us deeply and repeatedly when sin crops up in our lives. To harden ourselves or protect ourselves from it is to close ourselves to God’s mercy and love.”
The word, “Peace” is almost in every book in the Bible!
Here are some verses I found recently and some of my old favorites. You can find some yourself, if you go to www.Biblegateway.com and type, “peace” in the key word search…
The LORD will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace. Exodus 14:14
The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts; and in this place will I give peace and prosperity, says the Lord of hosts. Haggai 2:9
Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord…. Hebrews 12:14
Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. James 3:18
If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. John14:27
You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3
O you afflicted one, Tossed with tempest, and not comforted, Behold, I will lay your stones with colorful gems, And lay your foundations with sapphires. I will make your pinnacles of rubies, Your gates of crystal, And all your walls of precious stones. All your children shall be taught by the LORD, And great shall be the peace of your children. Isaiah 54:11-13
The LORD bless you and keep you; The LORD make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace. Numbers 6:23-26