Chasing After Peace

All of us carry baggage in some way, even if it’s seemingly insignificant. We can’t get over the way we’ve been hurt or the way we’ve been left by the people we thought would always be there. We’ve been rejected by potential friendships, jobs, or romantic interests. Words of people we trust closely have stung deeper than ever intended, and left wounds that tell us “this is who you are.” Our experienced past becomes our lived present and our expected future. We become hopeless anxious shells of the people God created us to be— people without a hope, people without a future.

Maybe we’re stuck on who we used to be. Maybe we look back and all we can see is our sin staring us straight in the face, telling us we’re not worthy to be called a child of God. Maybe we don’t think God could really use someone like us. That His grace is somehow for everyone else. If you’re drowning in condemnation and shame for past sin, rest in the truth that God isn’t stuck on that.
 
 “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” - Hebrews 8:12

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death” - Romans 8:1-2

The Father is present-future with us, not present-past. He isn’t holding your sin over your head. We are hidden in Christ. God looks at His Son, Jesus, and says you’re clean. You’re clothed in righteousness. You’re my son. You’re my daughter. The world can make our hearts so hard. The world tells us not to trust and not to hope. It whispers lies and doubts God’s kindness and goodness. But God requires soft hearts of His people. He asks us to remain prisoners of hope. He asks for our complete surrender and trust. He asks us to take every thought captive.
 
When all we can look at is our past disappointments, we miss out on the green pastures God is kindly leading us into now. His Word tells us that He is working all things together for our good and His glory (Rom. 8:28). Do we cling to that truth or do we let anxiety and lies feed away at our minds? In Mark chapter 12 Jesus tell his disciples,

“Have faith in God. Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘go throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart, but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Jesus calls us to radical faith and trust in God. He calls us to be illogical and childlike in the way we hope. When we put our hope in the person of Jesus Christ, we will not be put to shame (Romans 5:5).
 
How often do we choose to live out of doubt and mistrust? Are we resting on His promises? In what ways do we let our past experiences dictate our truth? In what ways do we need to let God reshape our reality with the truth of who He is and who He says we are?

“You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.
Trust in the Lord forever, 
for the Lord, the Lord himself, 
is the Rock eternal”
 - Isaiah 26:3-4

Let’s chase after His perfect peace. Let’s put our trust in the Rock eternal.

Author | Olivia Beals

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