As I quickly approach 55, and well into my Back 9 living, I continue to find there are many things you cannot know until you experience them. One is seeing your own child marry and also participating in the wedding of your friend’s child. Such joy and elation. One of the most fun things I have ever done. And then……. there is the very other end of the spectrum– burying your child or standing with a friend who buries theirs. Horrible. Nauseating. Sad beyond sad.
This past weekend I reached both ends of the spectrum. I watched a lifelong friend’s daughter, who is like a daughter to me, walk the aisle in a fairytale setting with her two handsome brothers and loving cousins standing with her. We danced the night away. Celebrating. Not to mention eating things like “fried macaroni puffs” and drinking champagne.
Within 24 hours I was standing in a receiving line hundreds of people long, looking at and then hugging “crumbled” friends with swollen faces from unstoppable tears. First, aunts and uncles then, cousins. Then, the siblings and precious mom and dad whose son lay in the casket in front of them. It was a gut-wrenching moment for me. Far from the elation I had experienced just hours before…….
As we drove home, my emotions and thoughts ping-ponged inside my head. It was very hard for me to settle myself. Thankfully I have learned to repeat God’s word to myself, which is how I calm the “balls of emotions” bouncing in my head and stabbing at my heart. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in EVERY SITUATION, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the PEACE of God which TRANSCENDS ALL understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:6-7, emphasis added).
My friends, I write this short, but powerful, Scripture today for you to memorize and apply. If you live long enough, you will experience in this life…things that will take your emotions to places of turmoil and desperation.
It can be the “nerves” of wedding festivities and a desire for your plans to go well and smooth. Or nerves that wreck your guts from tragedy. With either end of the spectrum, from the very joyful to the extremely devastating, God can bring a PEACE that is unexplainable. I can testify. I have experienced it. Marrying Collins off last September and the anxiousness I felt over the weather (outside wedding) to everyone arriving safely to a destination wedding in the mountains.
And this past January when I found Brewer like a “zombie,” unable to speak or follow commands as a result of a blood clot that caused a stroke. Having his life hanging in the balance for days. Before that, it was April, a year ago, when a staph infection was ravaging Thomas’ face. Life-threatening because of the proximity to his brain. It required TWO emergency surgeries.
THE PEACE I received during all three times….I can tell you…was ONLY GOD. It was Jehovah Jireh, the only One who can wash that kind of PEACE over you. I can’t imagine anyone not knowing that there is a God…….Immanuel…the PRINCE OF PEACE…who will literally carry YOU in all of life circumstances.
I want everyone to know…that death, disease and devastation was brought into the world by sin, man’s sin. But God. God, who so loved the world that He sent his one and only Son that whosoever would believe, would have everlasting life (see John 3:16-17). Because of God…in this life…we can experience PEACE in the midst of all of life’s VERY ups and VERY downs such as I’ve written about today.
Today, if you do not have a clue as to what I am talking about…let me just share.
God sent his son, Jesus, to earth. He lived and walked as fully God and fully man. He taught and inspired. He healed and He performed miracles on this earth. Then he was led to a cruel cross and nailed to it. Died as a PERFECT SACRIFICE. Paying the penalty for every man/woman’s sin.
On the third day, HE ROSE FROM THE DEAD (Easter). Demonstrating God’s power to forgive our sin and to give us eternal life! On any day we can CHOOSE TO receive HIS FREE GIFT OF salvation; we just simply have to believe. Invite Jesus into our hearts to reside there. At that point we become aware and recognize that we are sinners and we desire to repent of our sins. We realize we are incapable of saving ourselves.
At the very moment we invite Jesus into our hearts, HE sends His HOLY SPIRIT to indwell us. It is then when we have the HOLY SPIRIT who can wash us with the PEACE that transcends all understanding.
So, if you have asked for that PEACE and never feel that you have experienced it, then maybe…YOU need to accept Jesus. At that point you will receive His HOLY SPIRIT. You HAVE ALL THE GIFTS GOD CAN GIVE. One of them is unexplainable PEACE, especially in the middle of a life storm. The Bible is true. It is life’s manual. It is the power of God’s HOLY SPIRIT that will enable you to understand, apply and live the promises found in it.
SEEK JESUS TODAY. He is a matchless fortress and power for your life and HE alone provides ETERNAL LIFE.