Why Don’t We Have Peace? Jn 14: 27 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
As Christians, we should be able to walk in the peace that Jesus Christ gave us [Jn 14:27]. His peace is far better than any peace that the world gives. His peace keeps your heart from being troubled. So, why do we encounter some things that trouble us so much that they keep us from walking in his peace? Why don’t we have peace? We don’t have peace because:
We are filling our minds with the problem, rather than staying our minds on the Lord – Is 26:3 – “Thou wilt keep in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee…” When you encounter a particular problem that grips your mind, you can’t think about anything else but that problem. You tell yourself, “I’m not going to think about that right now. I’m going to quit thinking about that.” And in less than five minutes you are deep in thought about it. It’s all that you can think about. You go to sleep thinking about it (if you can sleep) and you wake up thinking about it. Your emotional frame of mind is that you will not have peace and rest until this problem is solved.
You must stay your mind on the Lord. Some problems don’t go away for a long time. Some may never go away. If you keep thinking about the problem, ‘you’ will go away from the Lord. So, fill your mind with thoughts of the Lord. Your emotions may be ragged from all the mental gyrations. Don’t worry about how you feel. In time, your feelings will catch up with your thoughts of the Lord and they will change, even if your problem doesn’t. And you’ll have peace.
We are attacking the problem, rather than trusting the Lord – Is 26:3 – “…because he trusteth in thee.” When you stay your mind on the Lord, he gives you verses of scripture and counsel to follow. You know what to do because he tells you. However, rather than trust the Lord and rely on what he said, you keep taking matters back into your own hands. You keep trying to solve the problem. You keep attacking the problem. You keep meddling with the circumstances. Trust the Lord, instead. Do what he tells you to do. He alone is trustworthy. “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man,” [Ps 118:8]. He knows the minutest details of your problem and can do things to address it that no man on this earth can do. Give him time to work his plan and just trust him through it. If he needs you to do something about the problem, he’ll show you or tell you what to do. In the meantime, let him deal with it. Trust him and you’ll have peace.
We are hating the problem, rather than loving the word – Ps 119:165 – “Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend them.” Dealing with a problem affects your emotions in powerful ways. You get angry, frustrated, and bitter. At times you think you might go crazy. You become so emotionally distressed that you don’t feel the love you have for the Lord or for his word. Instead, you feel resentment and hatred toward whoever is adding to your pain. You may read the Bible, but you’re not loving what you’re reading. You’re not savoring the words; your stewing over the problem. Your emotions are negative. You’re not getting anything out of what you’re reading.
When you get your mind back on the Lord and you truly trust him, you start to love these words again. And you start believing these words again. If you think about it, unbelief is at the root of your lack of peace. Trust what he said. If you do, you won’t read because you have to; you’ll read because you want to. The word will just come alive for you. You’ll rejoice in your fellowship with the Lord in his words. Your affections will go upward. And your emotions will go from hatred and anger to love and peace.
We are loading our cares on ourselves, rather than casting our cares on Jesus – 1 Pet 5:7 – “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” Phil 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing.” You are full of care over your problem. It’s weighing on you so heavily that you just keep adding to the load. You must cast those cares on the Lord. Carrying your own cares and the emotions that go with them is bad for your health. You are paying a much bigger price than your problem would have cost you. And your load of care is also bad for your relationships. Bitterness springs up and defiles many, as they have to deal with your angry outbursts and moody behavior. Cast your cares on the Lord and let his peace comfort you. He is not going to reach down and take them off of you; you must cast them on him. When you do, you will realize how much better it is to have his peace than your load of cares.
We are praying with misgiving, rather than praying with thanksgiving – Phil 4:6-7 – “prayer and supplication with thanksgiving.” So often when we pray we imagine how the thing we are praying about is getting worse, going awry and not going to get fixed. We pray like the woman who wearied the judge in Lk 18:1-5. We think, “If I weary the Lord with my prayers, he will fix my problem.” Of course, we’re hoping he’ll fix it right now. And when he doesn’t, we come away from that prayer without a solution and without peace. Peace doesn’t come until you can thank God in your prayer. You ask, “Thank him for what?” Thank the Lord for everything in your life [1 Thes 5:18]. While your problem is big and burdensome to you, it is not the only thing going on in your life. Thank him for being trustworthy. Thank him for his words. Thank him for taking your cares when you cast them on him. Thank him for the peace he just gave you when you started thanking him for all those things.
Conclusion: I know people who have problems that have been with them for decades. And others who have problems that will never be fixed. And yet, they have peace, wonderful peace. They couldn’t have more peace if their problem was solved. When their problem is solved, they’ll have the joy of the desire accomplished. But they won’t have more peace, because they have that now.