Desperate for Peace
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1
A few years back, while on a road trip, we tried to check in to our hotel, only to find they didn’t have a room matching our reservation. The guy behind the desk was apologetic and asked if we’d be OK with the presidential suite. Sigh – I guess that’s OK.
I could have refused the suite (it was amazing), but accepting that gift was an easy choice that only an idiot would have declined. I have however, walked away from far better things in life. Through Christ, I’ve been given the fantastic gift of living in peaceful communion with God. In my addiction though, I experienced nothing but constant turmoil because my behavior was completely inconsistent with the life for which I was made. I was desperate for peace, often begging God for it. I read passages like today’s and I thought, I believe in you God. Why don’t I feel like I’m at peace with you?
I mistakenly thought that simply saying, I believe in you, meant that I should experience the peace and joy of a relationship with God. The problem was that I had little interest in doing what it took to live in that relationship. I wanted to follow my way, pursuing my appetite, while enjoying supernatural peace with God.
As Christians, peace with God should be a defining characteristic of our lives, yet many of us live in turmoil. Why? We don’t lose our relationship with him when we fail, but experientially, God’s peace isn’t manifest in our lives while we engage in our self-destructive pursuits. We cannot simultaneously enjoy the pleasure of sin and the peace of God. To experience the peace with God that is ours, we must abandon the turmoil of following ourselves. The choice is ours – the miserable angst of our old life, or the peace of a new life with God.
The problem is that the decision isn’t as easy as a good hotel deal. The old life still has its claws sunk into us and cutting it out can be dreadfully painful. At this point, we must decide how badly we want peace. For me, I had to radically change my life, doing what it took to find recovery. Daily now, I still must strive to live in the peace of God. Peace with God has been given to us, so daily, if we desire to experience it, we must choose to live in it.