During this season of Advent, we will be taking a break from our study in the Book of Mark and will instead offer daily devotionals for you to read aloud with your family, pertaining to this Advent season. We will resume our study of Mark in a few weeks.
The Ministry of Peace
"Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; . . ." John 14:27
There are seasons in the life of a Christ-follower when peace is based on our unawareness. We are blind to the gravity of the circumstance in which we are in, but when we become aware of impending danger, our peace disappears, only to discover we've been living with a false sense of security. And, we find it impossible to reproduce the real peace we need.
The disciples were beginning to realize their time with Jesus was drawing to a close. They were disturbed, agitated and upset. Soon Jesus would be physically absent from them. In their fear of separation from Jesus, their minds turn to thoughts of themselves and what they would do without Him. But Jesus ministers peace to them.
Peace is Jesus’ gift to His disciples. The peace that Jesus gives is the result of the presence of the Holy Spirit within them. By bidding them peace, He wasn't just saying farewell and good luck. Jesus is using peace as a ministry for His purpose in the disciples’ lives.
Jesus repeats the word peace to draw attention to the quality of peace. It's not usual peace, but Christ’s own peace He's giving to them. When trouble presses in on us, He calls us to look to Him only. When we do, the confusion will stop and there will be peace brought into our heart.
Jesus differentiates the gift of peace from that of anything the world can give. When the world says peace it's no more than well-wishing. But Christ gives peace and because He gives us His peace, He secures our confidence in Him and does not let our heart be troubled.
Starts with Christ
Trying to worry our way out of problems will only destroy our capacity for the ministry of peace to take place in us. We create our own trouble because we fail to start with Christ. When problems press in, look to Jesus, receive peace from Him. Spread the issues of your life before Him and listen to Jesus say, "My peace I give to you."
Are you troubled? Are you confused? Look to Jesus.