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Sunday, March 17, 2013

Peace: Tranquility of the Heart

Peace: Tranquility of the HeartThe biblical idea of peace is heavenly. War is over. Business is good. Relationships are restored. Forgiveness is given and received. Bodies and souls are healthy. Danger and hostility are overcome. Covenant is intact. It just feels good, doesn't it? 




Five great questions of life: Life * Love * Learning * Labor * Leadership

Life: What's My Spiritual Center?

Peace: Tranquility of the Heart

By Evan Nehring
Nothing missing, nothing broken. I had a friend who would routinely pray those words over people at church. It was a prayer for peace.
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7, NIV 2011)
 
We all want that. We don’t want internal chaos. But it’s not that simple, is it? Life comes at us from a hundred angles and then we pursue challenges which complicate things further.
 
The biblical idea of peace is heavenly. War is over. Business is good. Relationships are restored. Forgiveness is given and received. Bodies and souls are healthy. Danger and hostility are overcome. Covenant is intact. It just feels good, doesn’t it?
 
It’s a stark contrast to hostility, brokenness and selfishness. It’s heaven on earth. It starts with our God-connection. Peace with God, allows us to have peace with ourselves, which allows us to have peace with others. That’s how Prof. Bill Crew used to say it back at North Central Bible College. If your relationships with others are strained, ask yourself how well you like yourself. If your relationship with yourself is bad, ask yourself how your relationship with God is doing.
 
In the New Testament, the word for peace has the meaning of the Hebrew word, shalom. It is a tranquility of heart which comes from knowing that our times are in the hands of God. This became the Christian name, Irene, my mother’s middle name.
 
Peace: Tranquility of the Heart
 
My wife’s sister had a picture in her home with the caption, Complete Serenity. It was a cottage on the waterfront at sunset with firelight glowing out from the windows. Beautiful! The setting was filled with things that I love: nature, a fireplace, water, a home filled with family and friends.
 
Now take that complete serenity, put it in your heart and you've really got something!
A heart at peace gives life to the body,
but envy rots the bones. (Proverbs 14:30)
 
Nothing broken, nothing missing. Tranquility of the heart. Peace.

Question

So, what do you do when life is feeling chaotic? Where do you find tranquility of the heart?
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4 comments:

  1. Awesome post, Evan. I think some people neglect to realize that God absolutely desires we have peace in Him!

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  2. Andrea, we get drawn into the drama, don't we? As in heaven, so on earth...God, let your kingdom come in my heart!

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  3. Love the cottage picture. I need to share a picture with you that I took in our valley of a little white cottage with a big wall of hill behind it. It reminded me of your house. Our pastor just preached a bit on peace this
    Sunday and the verse Romans 12:17 about living at peace with everyone that you can. Conflict steals our joy and loving is one way people see God in us. I know from experience that living in turmoil is an awful feeling and I'm sure it's bad for our health. Stress from lack of peace can definitely cause health issues. Sin is tempting but not rewarding or beneficial. Keeping our eyes on the prize will keep us focused on what's good. Just a few random thoughts. From your sister Heather

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  4. Heather, I saw the valley pictures on Facebook. Nice to be thought of!

    We'll always deal with difficult people, won't we? God help us! Living at peace is so rich!

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