Saturday, June 19, 2010

I find myself at odds with the inner workings of my own mind when it comes to finding the inner peace that I so eagerly seek.  As my hub and I lay in bed last night sharing in a devotion on the visibility of God and the nature of Christian commitment the question that was posed was "how have grace and peace made a difference in your beliefs, attitudes, priorities and relationships?"

Good question.

Regardless of your faith base and belief system, there is a commonality or unified vision in all faiths (theologically speaking) to seek a peace in your own life.  Christian faith leads its followers to seek that peace from the Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ-  "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”(- John 14: 27)  My Jewish brothers and sisters believe, at least in part, that peace comes when the person embraces the tension that exists between the body and the soul and finding meaning in your struggles.  Islamic beliefs dictate that peace is arrived at when they submit to the commands of their creator- "Truly, in remembering God do hearts find rest.”(- Quran 13:28)

I think, even though I am soundly resolved in my faith as a Christian, we can all gain so much in seeing how other faiths see this eternal quest.  For me, peace is a battle between your body and soul and I do genuinely believe that in my Lord I will find rest - so I guess we all have it right when we put our heads together. 

Grace is a different animal. 

I believe the only way to receive grace is allowing the love and mercy of Jesus Christ into your heart and life, and when I start to pontificate on this very matter I cannot separate the concepts of grace and peace - they work in compliment with each other in my life.  For me, without grace, peace remains elusive.  So, when peace is difficult to find, grasp or feel it is apparent that I have distanced myself from the grace of God. 

Undeserving.  Worthless.  Sinful.  Broken. 

This distance leads to so much more turmoil than just the lack of peace.  Moving myself away from or back into the fold of God's grace is my own action or inaction and I stand before Him undeserving, worthless, sinful and broken.  His grace and peace that flows so freely is there to be boldly received and taken but bravery and courage are often conquered by weakness and fear.  Oh but the courage to trust Him more.  This very battle is where grace comes in to slay the undeserving, worthless, sinful and broken nature of man.  We become anew in HIM.  When I find myself close to God's grace all my human nature falls away and I am only His child reaching out to her Father needing His love that knows no bounds. 

Deserving.  Valued.  Forgiven.  Whole.

So, where do I see grace and peace?  How have they changed me?  I see it in every moment and I am irreparably transformed again and again, only but by the GRACE of God do I go on.


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