Peace Keeper

(Luke 22:39-45 NIV)  Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. {40} On reaching the place, he said to them, "Pray that you will not fall into temptation." {41} He withdrew about a stone's throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, {42} "Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done." {43} An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. {44} And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. {45} When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow.

Those who are at war with others are not at peace with themselves. -William Hazilitt

The above verses aren't actually a portrait of peace. In fact, it appears to be anything but that. Peace doesn’t always precede obedience as is proven by Christ's agony on the mountain. Notice that Jesus focus isn't even on peace but it is on the will of the Father. Is it possible that peace is the result of a submitted will to God?  How many times have you heard people say, “I feel a peace about my decision?” I don’t hear these words from Christ. He is sweating great drops of sweat that were like blood. If Christ had made a decision based on peace, or how He felt, we would all be in hell today. There was no peace at the cross but there was peace on the cross.

The renowned musician Jimi Hendrix said, "When the power of love overcomes the love for power the world will know peace."

The best that any of us can hope for is to be "peace keepers". And, I will not know peace if my quest for power is greater than that of love. Even then I can't make peace with everyone because there are just people who love chaos and hatred more than peace and tranquility. However, in the midst of their hatred, like those who crucified Christ, I can keep peace within myself. We were not called to be "peace makers", not even Christ achieved that task while on earth. So, if you are adjusting your personality and compromising your convictions in hopes of making others happy or at peace, good luck. 

Peace keeps us and guards us but doesn't guide us.

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3 NIV)

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:4-7 NIV)

I have an opinion, not a theology, about peace. I believe that peace is the result of obedience not the reason for it. According to Isaiah peace is connected to keeping our minds on God. In fact peace should not even be a pursuit, God is our pursuit. Or, as Paul wrote to the church at Galatia, peace is a fruit that is the outgrowth of the Holy Spirits presence in the life of a believer.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace…." (Galatians 5:22)

I'm going to go out on a limb here and ask a very difficult question. Is it possible to know true peace without God the Father, Jesus the Son or the Holy Spirit? Maybe anything that mirrors peace outside of the Trinity is known as calm, respite or conditional solace. In God peace can be permanent regardless of conditions. I'm not saying that it's easy to live in a constant state of peace but peace is always available as we "keep" our focus on God.

Today was a day that tested my peace. Conflict of any type is a "peace enemy". I guess one way to challenge conflict is to say, "Today is a good day to have a bad day." Or, "This is the best mistake that I ever made". What? Bad days and mistakes can actually serve to draw us nearer to God and help us with personal growth and development. Also, there just seem to be days that a bad day is no match for our faith and confidence. 

Why do we call Good Friday, Good Friday? Was it a good day for Christ to have a bad day? That bad day became the beginning of a good day for all mankind. My bad day(s) will eventually be seen as a good day if I do the right thing in response to a bad thing. We get to create our own perspective and attitude. It doesn't mean that we won't have to fight and scrape but if we keep our minds on God and remain full of the Holy Spirit, peace will most certainly be ours.

"If we have not peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other." Mother Theresa