Keeping the Peace
Romans 12:18, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”Philippians 4:7, “The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
The Bible never says that we have to like everybody. Inevitably, some people just get under our skin. Maybe they’ve hurt us or betrayed our confidence. Perhaps we dislike their actions or their personality clashes with our own. But likeability and the ability to love are two very different things. That’s why Jesus gave us the Greatest Commandment: “Love God and love others as yourself.” There are no conditional clauses or addendums applied to God’s love for us. Therefore, we, too, must love and do our best to live at peace with everyone.Jesus certainly had a distaste for many of the religious elite’s actions. He challenged their hypocrisy numerous times. And Jesus probably didn’t have warm and fuzzy feelings about the soldiers who mocked and tortured Him to the point of death. Nonetheless, He loved them enough to die for the forgiveness of their sins — and ours.So often, those who’ve hurt us aren’t even aware of the full extent of what they’ve done. And many times, their offensive behavior isn’t even about us at all, because hurt people hurt people. For this reason, we must forgive them as Jesus has forgiven us. Not only will it usher in the peace of God that transcends all understanding, but it also frees us to live out His absolute best for our lives.So, dislike, like, or love – whoever wrongs you, tap into the amazing grace that’s yours in Christ!
In Philippians 4:7, Paul gives great words of encouragement to the believers in Philippi. Meditate on this verse one phrase at a time to help calm your mind and refocus your thoughts on Jesus when relational or inner peace feels impossible.
Dear Lord, Thank You for instilling Your peace that transcends all understanding into my heart. To grow more and more like You, I choose to extend forgiveness to those who've wronged me and rely on Your strength to live at peace with everyone. In Jesus' name, Amen.