We can enjoy peace by resting on God. But what about the times we don't have peace? What keeps us from enjoying true peace? To what sorts of things do we look for peace, other than to God Himself?
Alternative sources of peace:
- Addiction: we may use sexual addiction, drunkenness, or drug addiction as a means of temporarily forgetting about life's troubles.
- Distraction: some of us lose ourselves in music, movies, video games, or other entertainment.
- Workaholism: we may work ourselves to the bone, trying to forget about the rest of the noise in our life.
- Family: family relationships–a very good thing–can be a way of escaping from heartache around us. Our society is more frenetic than it's ever been, and we use the pace of life as a way of escaping.
- Busyness: some live life so busy that we don't have time to stop and think about our problems?
Even when we don't “create” other sources of peace, we often lack peace. What gets in the way of our peace?
Obstacles to peace:
- Lack of faith/trust in God (child)
- Failure to obey God in areas that are clear
- Harbored secret sin
- Conflict with others
- Replacing trust in God with trust in men
Any time we replace our trust in the Lord with reliance on men, we set ourselves up for disappointment.
Have you replaced God, the Everlasting Rock, with little human rocks? Human leaders will fail, whether they are leaders in the political arena or in your local church or in your family. If you're a parent, you know the taste of failure quite well.
Saying that leaders fail isn't a defense of failure and sin or saying that human leadership shouldn't be held accountable. They should be. The fact that we should be enjoying peace isn't an excuse for human leaders, meaning they can get away with what they want, since we should be experiencing feelings of peace and harmony. However, if human failure is shaking your confidence in God, then you've got your confidence in the wrong place. You're not leaning on God; you're leaning on your own understanding and on the people around you. Leaders are accountable to God and before God, and you stand accountable before God too.
God is the source of our peace, and the way to peace is trust and reliance on Him. The result of that should be a sense of rest before God and a sense of rest in our place in the world. Perfect peace is God's gift to those who rest on Him. The leaning into, the resting is passive. In other words, God works in our behalf as we rest in Him. It's sort of like needing surgery–it's something you have done, but it's something that you rest in the power of another to accomplish.
Do you know peace in God? Peace is a gift from God for those who trust in Him.