Accepting the Peace of ChristDaily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."
I was sitting in an overstuffed chair in my living room, a pleasant chamomile bouquet wafting from the mug of tea on the side table. It was the autumn of 2013, and I was beginning to deal with unresolved pains in my life.
In the eighteen months prior, my son, Titus, had failed to thrive. His frame had become gaunt, his ribs exposed. He'd endured weeks of hospitalization, months of tests, and more months of feeding through a tube. The doctors said he was a bona fide medical mystery, and there were only guesses as to the diagnosis.
The pain of my son's illness was a scourge, and as I sat in that chair, as I unpacked the pain, I discovered something deeper. The truth, as I knew it, was this: I'd never experienced God as healer, and it colored my perception of his goodness.
A faith healer once told me that with enough faith, God would heal me of my asthma. I remember the warmth of his olive-oiled finger painting a cross on my head, the way he'd prayed healing in the name of Jesus. But the healing didn't take. I continued to struggle with asthma, despite all prayers, well into my thirties.
Sitting in these memories, noting the creeping anxiety, I heard the voice of the faith healer. "With enough faith," he said, "all things are possible. O ye of little faith."
It was the personification of my pain, the very voice from God on how to beat back these voices of doubt. In the meantime, though, the voice of Christ was calling me to embrace doubt, to experience a mysterious and perfect quiet that exists in all circumstances, to rest in the peace of his presence.
FOR FURTHER REFLECTION:
When was the last time you experienced the deep and abiding peace of Christ? When was the last time you experienced healing? Today, will you sit in silence? Will you ask God to bring his peace and healing into the troubles of your life?
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me. Allow your perfect peace to calm my anxieties and doubts. Let it be a salve to my sores, a bandage to my wounds, and the cure for my pain. Amen.
READ THE PASSAGE IN CONTEXT:
Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.
"All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."