God faithfully supplies His grace to every area of our life. His grace is flowing freely… until we choke the flow by allowing the devil to get us worried and troubled!
On the night that our Lord Jesus was betrayed, on the night that He entered into His passion and suffered for us, He said to His disciples:
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Jesus’ last will, and the greatest gift, that He wanted to leave behind for His disciples before His crucifixion was the gift of peace.
Our Lord is called the King of Salem (Hebrews 7:2). “Salem” means “peace.” He is also called the Prince of Peace. When He was on earth, He walked in such peace that He was always in control. They tried to stone Him once, but He just walked through the midst of them unharmed (John 8:59). No one could touch Him. He had perfect and absolute peace.
The devil ruffled up a storm in the Sea of Galilee, but Jesus just continued sleeping in the boat. The devil’s attack did not wake Him, only the cry of His disciples did (Mark 4:35–41). Even in His death, He was in control. No one took His life from Him. He laid down His life (John 10:17–18). He made the choice in the garden to lay down His life for us.
The Shalom (Peace) Of God
Jesus was and is always in perfect control. And one of the reasons He was so powerful was that He walked in the shalom (peace) of God. The word “peace” in John 14:27 is the word “shalom” in Hebrew. It means wellness, wholeness, completeness, as well as peace of heart and mind. So having shalom means having every part of you — spirit, soul and body — well.
So what did Jesus mean when He said, “Shalom I leave with you. Not the world’s shalom, but My shalom”? This is what He meant: “The shalom you saw Me living in; the shalom you saw Me sleep in, in that boat; the shalom you saw Me walk in, in the midst of the people who wanted to stone Me; the shalom that renders the devil powerless to touch Me; this shalom, My shalom, I give to you.”
This is the peace that Jesus has bequeathed to us. It is not a worldly peace that comes through soothing music, meditation, or deep breathing. It is more robust than that! It is not dependent on circumstances and it works in the midst of the storms of life.
Guard Your Heart Above All Else
“But Pastor Prince, if Jesus has given me this peace, why am I still so troubled and worried about many things?”
It is because you have allowed your heart to be troubled. Notice that immediately after Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you…”, He said, “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” You have to let not your heart be troubled or afraid. The Lord cannot “let not” for you. Your wife cannot “let not” for you. I cannot “let not” for you. You have to “let not” yourself!
Many people are guarding their finances, careers, children, health and so on. But the Lord does not want us to guard these things. Instead, He wants us to guard our hearts:
Proverbs 4:23, NIV
Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.
We are to guard our hearts above all else. If we will guard that which is inside (He cannot guard that for us), God will guard all the other things on the outside. If we will let not our hearts be troubled or afraid, righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit will start flowing in our hearts. That is actually seeking first the kingdom of God, and all those things on the outside that we need will be added to us! (Matthew 6:33)
This should bring us relief. We don’t have to worry about so many things. We just have to guard our hearts. People make foolish decisions when their hearts are troubled. They do things that they would otherwise not do. So guard your heart. The Lord said to me once that if we will guard our hearts from being troubled or afraid, then if it is a miracle we need, a miracle we will get!
The way you guard your heart from being troubled and afraid is to quote John 14:27. Whenever trouble comes to your heart or you feel fearful, say, “Let not my heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” And you will release the power for the fulfilment of the verse. The peace of God will start flowing in your heart.
His Grace At Its Best
We all have our areas of weaknesses and strengths. What troubles me may not trouble you and vice versa. The devil knows which buttons to push for each one of us.
For example, while I may at times worry about my daughter because I love her so much, I am just not worried about my finances.
Even when I was a student and my family was not well off, I was not worried about money. God gave me a grace ever since I was born-again to not worry about money.
The devil cannot get you in the areas of your life that you are not concerned about.
In fact, the Lord said to me recently, “Son, have you noticed that the devil cannot get you in the areas of your life that you are not concerned about? The areas that you are not troubled about are the areas where you see My grace at its best, My blessings at their richest.”
When He said that, I began to realize that there were other areas besides finances that I was not troubled about and where
God’s grace flowed freely.
Some people think that their problems are too small for God to handle. “I am too embarrassed to tell God what troubles me. It is just a pimple that has been there for a few weeks.” Listen, if it causes your heart to be troubled, it is not a small thing!
God wants you to cast it on Him. He does not want your heart troubled by anything, either big or small. And if you will cast it on Him and let not your heart be troubled, His grace will flow freely in that area of your life.
The Spirit Teaches Us On The Wavelength Of Peace
Another thing I want you to notice is that just before Jesus talks about giving His disciples His peace, He talks about the
Holy Spirit’s guidance:
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. Peace I leave with you…
Jesus is telling us that the Holy Spirit teaches us all things on the wavelength of peace. In other words, if you guard your heart from being troubled by a problem, if you refuse to worry about it and just abide in His peace, the Holy Spirit will “teach you all things.” He will show you the way out of the situation!
My Experience With Stomach Pain
A number of years ago, I experienced some pain in my stomach, and finally went to see a specialist. Convinced that I needed to have a scope, he told me, “You never know, these symptoms that you have, you may think that they are nothing, but…” I looked at him and, you know, faith comes by hearing, but fear also comes by hearing!
After the consultation, I told myself, “Nah, forget about what he said. I am a man of faith!” But his words kept coming back to me. And as long as the symptoms were there and I had not had the scope done, I continued to be concerned about my symptoms. So
I finally went for the scope. “Why not just settle it once and for all?” I told myself.
As it turned out, there was nothing wrong with my stomach. The pains were just lying symptoms! But do you know what happened during those months? I watched what I ate very carefully. I was fearful for my health for the first time, so much so that I began to eat organic food and drink carrot juice every day! I told my wife, Wendy, that I had to have brown rice — no white rice for me. Even when we ate out, I would bring along my brown rice! I was that radical. I also began to read Christian books on dieting. And I ran for about 45 minutes almost every day until I was so skinny!
Yet, with all that organic food, carrot juice and regular exercise, I went to see the doctor more often during those months than all the years when I did not exercise or eat so well! And they were for other reasons, not my stomach.
The Devil’s Modus Operandi
Now, when I look back, I can see how what the Lord said is so true. When I began to worry about a particular area of my life, problems started popping up in that very area.
As I was meditating on all this, the Lord began to show me the modus operandi of the devil, the way he operates. First, he comes to you and he sees an area of your life that he wants to attack. But he knows that he has no power to harm you — Jesus stripped him of all his power (Colossians 2:15). So the only thing he can do is to get you to worry.
Do you remember what 1 Peter 5:8 says? “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” What is the preceding verse? “… casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7)
The devil cannot manage a peaceful Christian!
In other words, whenever you are full of cares and are not casting your cares on the Lord, you become “devour-able” to the devil. But the opposite is also true: The devil cannot manage a peaceful Christian! No, he has to get you ruffled, troubled, worried and fearful first before he can touch you.
By: Joseph Prince
Global Grace News http://www.globalgracenews.org