Thankfully, making peace with God is a simple process. He makes it simple because He doesn’t want any of us to perish. (2 Peter 3:9)
Though peace with God is simple, unfortunately, we can’t make the leap from making peace with God to finding true peace with others without first landing on some inner peace. Since that’s the hardest part of the journey for many of us, we’ll spend the next few weeks exploring four stepping stones that may help us navigate a troubled spirit: Reflect. Remember. Rejoice. Reset.
David, when reflecting on his sin with Bathsheba, prayed, “I know that you delight to set your truth deep I my spirit. So come into the hidden places of my heart and teach me wisdom.” (Psalm 51:6, TPT)
David realized he had some hidden places that needed attention. Unresolved hurt or unconfessed sin lingers in the soul no matter how hard we try to smile it away. Without us realizing it, it marks us by coloring the way we view the world around us. Sometimes, it even affects how we view God.
Solomon, when passing wisdom on to his sons, said, “Above all, guard the affections of your heart, for they affect all that you are. Pay attention to the welfare of your innermost being, for from there flows the wellspring of life.” (Proverbs 4:23, TPT)
Solomon learned the importance of taking care of his innermost being. Our feelings of fear, unworthiness, or rejection will always show up in the way we respond to others. Courageously taking inventory of our emotional health is not only smart, but it offers the Spirit a chance to comfort, correct, and teach us. How reassuring it is to know that our audience of One is what matters most!
Jesus instructed the Pharisees to reflect on their own lives when He said, “First wash the inside of the cup and the dish, and then the outside will become clean, too.” (Matthew 23:26, NLT) Jesus knew that a religious exterior could never overcome a messy interior. So often in our culture, busyness defines our religious exterior. If we stay busy enough, we won’t have time to reflect and make any changes. Don’t get me wrong; doing good with the right heart delights God and brings us joy. But perhaps nothing delights Satan any more than when our religious busyness leads us away from having true peace with ourselves. He knows if he can keep us from taking the time to reflect on what’s going on inside, he can keep us from becoming peacemakers. Trust me on that one.
Let’s all take time this week to do some hard things that reap great rewards:
- Identify and reflect on those hidden places in our hearts. Let’s be wise.
- Pay close attention to how we think and what we value most. Let’s be teachable.
- Inspect what’s on our insides. Let’s be courageous.
Next week, we’ll go back and REMEMBER some things.
“So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control our mind leads to life and peace.” (Romans 8:6, NLT)