Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
I once spent 11 days in the hospital. Hooked up to an IV drip and painkillers, the details are murky. The days and nights flowed in and out with nurse changes, continuous Jell-O, and daytime TV shows mumbling in the background.
Sunday came around, and I couldn’t go to church but needed all the encouragement I could get. I grabbed my phone and put on the service’s livestream. The pastor’s familiar voice filled the stark room.
I don’t remember the sermon. I flowed in and out of consciousness, unable to stay awake with all the medication and toil my body had been through. I do remember the comfort the moment provided, reminding me I wasn’t alone.
In my thirty-six years on this earth, I’ve already learned that time can be short. I’ve been through a lot and still have daily struggles, but know I’m not alone in them. And, I know we can have peace even when things aren’t going well.
In John 15, Jesus comforts the disciples before He’s crucified on the cross. He tells them He’s going away but promises to send the Holy Spirit to be with them. This Spirit gives many gifts, including the gift of peace. The disciples didn’t understand why Jesus was going away. Similarly, we have things go away from us all the time. People go away. Health goes away. Dreams go away.
But that same Holy Spirit that Jesus promised to His disciples is with His believers today. We have the living God inside of us, and He is never going away.
Our world offers a different type of “peace,” a multitude of stuff that can numb our minds and hearts so we temporarily forget about the hurt. This type of peace isn’t long-lasting. It’s a band-aid ready to wash off when the next wave of pain comes rolling in.
Instead, let’s look to our Father. Let’s call on His Spirit. Only then can we experience true peace, true peace that won’t go away and can find us wherever we are. Even sick and frail in a hospital bed.
- Read John 14:15-21. What does Jesus promise the disciples?
- Who in your life needs to experience peace from the Holy Spirit? Spend a few minutes praying for them.