“I’m telling you these things while I’m still living with you. The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. I’m leaving you well and whole. That’s my parting gift to you. Peace. I don’t leave you the way you’re used to being left—feeling abandoned, bereft. So don’t be upset. Don’t be distraught.
How often do we pray for peace in our lives, while at the same time we live as if peace was not at all on our wish list? We set up our lives. Now of course, life comes with busyness. There are important demands on our time that are good, and we need to pray for strength to do everything well. My challenge to you is…how do you decide what gets added to your to do list? In one breath do you pray for God’s peace, and in the next you are making decisions and plans without pausing to ask for His wisdom and direction.
In the bible verse about, we are reminded that Jesus came to give us the best gift of all: peace. It doesn’t say peace once everything is going right. It says peace. Peace is a gift that Jesus promises. Choosing to know Jesus and to follow Him sets our lives on a path of peace. I’m not saying everything will be easy or calm, but in the midst of whatever you are facing, this PEACE is there for you to access.
I’d like to share with you a poem I wrote. It challenges us to live our lives for on purpose- to seek after Jesus and this perfect peace.
Ticking clocks, late appointments
Hurried chats, busy schedules, loud voices
Little time, no time
When did we agree, when did we sign on
To a life so demanding, a pace so back-breaking
That we are left with nervous breaks, panic attacks
As we try to fill the gap between the demands and our ability
How short-sighted, how self-sadistic we have become
Our pace which will deplete and cripple, not strengthen and build
The life we want, the life we are working for
A life on a different trail than the one we trudge along
The truth in the midst of the flurry confounds
To rush through a pause, are we missing the point?
To hurry to the next, do we miss the current?
The immediate, the moment
Lost in the noise of miss-prioritized responsibilities
Deep breathes, thoughtful moments
Meaningful connections, revised priorities, realistic schedules
Time reconsidered, time submitted
This peace doesn’t come from us getting it all together, or from some special meditation with incense burning in the background. No, true peace exists in the person of Jesus Christ. My prayer for you this Christmas is that you would take time to pause. Be still. Take a deep breathe. Remember Who you are serving, and that His peace and provision is all that you need.
Merry Christmas to you and yours!
Emily Pelley is a PhD candidate in the Interdisciplinary program at Dalhousie University, doing research with refugee children and youth affected by war. She lives with her husband, Travis, and daughter, Laura, in Halifax, NS. Emily is passionate about the fight against human trafficking and she has used any avenues that come her way to raise awareness and mobilize people to stand up to this injustice. She is also actively involved in her church and has volunteered in many different community groups organizations, including the Canadian Red Cross, Shelter Nova Scotia, Teachers Without Borders, Dubai Women’s College, and Shiloh University Church.