“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7 (KJV)
Peace is a precious thing. As I study for my final exams, which conclude my junior year in college, I have a particularly heightened awareness of this fact and Iʻd like to share with you a secret that deserves to be known, about gaining peace. Everlasting peace.
A couple weeks ago, I formed a habit (Iʻm not too sure if I can call it good or not, yet) which birthed from my slight addiction to exercise and months on end of continuous skepticism about the American government and societal norms that infuriate me (but thatʻs for another blog..). The night before I had planned to meet up with my younger cousin to do a hike together, I laid in bed and all of a sudden came up with a brilliant idea: I would run to our meeting place, in lieu of driving. People are so used to convenience and this is an island for crying out loud, “we should use bipedal locomotion more often!”, I thought to myself with great valor.
Mind you, running, be it on a treadmill, or on a hike, or cross-country, or even to use the bathroom when I really need to go, is not my forte. At all… Never liked it in high school, and why would I like it now that Iʻm in far worse shape than I was back then? Still, somehow, it was a brilliant idea.
So here I am, 5am, half awake, tying my shoes and trying to talk myself out of going because the sunʻs not up yet so I canʻt see and what if I get hit by a car or trip on a mongoose, or x, y, z. I set my course and headed out the door (with reflective gear for safety). I made it to the destination in under an hour, a total of about 5 miles.
My cousin thought I was nuts, as we drove to the trailhead of the hike. Following our hike, a 1,048 step straight incline (then decline) feat, I topped off the so far very stink and sweaty morning by going with my aunty to her pilates class. Which by the way sounds like a soft, hippy kind of yoga related routine, but it was really hard and those shredded haole ladies mean business!
All this is not to congratulate myself; seriously, if I can do these things, anyone can. But that eventful day was the beginning of something grand, something that made me realize what peace truly is… Now, I try to run to more places, and it kills me to even think of saying this but, I actually do enjoy it. Let me tell you another story about peace..
Jesus of Nazareth was talking story with his disciples one night, telling them that He will leave soon. As the night grew older and the disciples had many concerns, Christ said this: “Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete…I have told you these things so that you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16: 20-24 & 33
In the middle of my 5 mile trek, I did not feel good. My body ached, I was out of breath, heavy-footed, and I wanted to give up. But, at those particular moments is when I realized that peace has nothing to do with feeling good.
Even Christ said so himself. We will experience heights of pain and turmoil throughout our lives; we will not feel good. But take heart… And with those two words, subconsciously knowing the rest of the verse, I find myself smiling, wiping the sweat from my face, pushing the cement ground back from my feet, and gliding forward. Here is the secret to everlasting peace: Jesus Christ.
No matter what, it does not matter. You can, and you will, and I give you a free lifetime warrantee on my saying that the way to do both is through the character and under the care of Jesus. This is the silver lining; the only one Iʻve come to know. Rough times are ahead for all, but take heart.. You will be criticized and hurt, but take heart.. You will fail, but take heart.. People will continue to destroy the earth for selfish gain, but take heart.. You will not feel good, but take heart.. For He has overcome.
You may not be a Christ follower, you might be Buddhist or even an atheist, Iʻm not totally sure as to who sees/reads my blogs. If you are anything BUT a Christian, then perfect! It is no coincidence that you stumbled upon this blog and read it in its entirety after the first mention of His name. His everlasting peace, founded in overcoming the very sickness of mankind, is yourʻs. Whether you like Him or not, it does not matter; His peace is FREE to all because His love is also free. Thatʻs nuts!
I double dare you.. to claim it, then watch your life change instantaneously.