True and lasting peace is impossible absent of Christ. Especially in this hour, this moment in human history, even the most sheltered, financially independent, and well-prepared men are having a harder and harder time clinging to peace.
Too much is going on, too many things are happening all at once, and though they’ve tried their best to insulate themselves, though they tried their best to make sure that they will have some semblance of peace while the rest of the world drowns in chaos and uncertainty, they have come to realize just how ethereal manufactured peace is, and how quickly it can slip through one’s fingers.
I don’t want to quibble about which is more important in life if one had to choose between health and peace. One’s health is certainly in the top three of what one requires to live a full life, but if you have health and no peace, all you are is a miserable healthy person who sees no reason to get out of bed in the morning or do anything productive throughout their day. I’ve met a few of those in my time; I’m sure you have too.
I’ve also known people throughout my life who did not have their health, not in the latter stages of their existence, but who didn’t have their health from the moment they were born. Yet they had peace, and the peace they had allowed them to achieve with their infirmity what other perfectly healthy people could only dream about. In some instances, their infirmity made them more committed, focused, and disciplined, to the point that they expressed their doubt as to being able to achieve all they had without it.
Without peace, however, there can be no joy in one’s life. Without peace, even the greatest of accomplishments seem lifeless and brittle. Without peace, we race to acquire the things we do not need and put off the essential things; the things that make life worth living.
Words matter, especially the words Jesus spoke, and none was spoken in haste or without a deep and profound purpose. Of all the things Jesus could have bestowed upon those closest to Him, His inner circle, those who had walked with Him, had been discipled by Him and fellowshipped with Him, He chose peace.
He could have bestowed health; it was within His power to do so. He could have bestowed wealth; it was within His power to do so. He could have bestowed notoriety; it was within His power to do so. Yet, of all the things Jesus could have left to His disciples, He chose to leave them peace.
This was not a retirement party for junior management at a real estate firm where they get a Walmart cake, an engraved pen, and a happy retirement balloon. Jesus wasn’t trying to give his disciples some piddling thing and show them the door hoping they never came back. Jesus loved His disciples, and we know this. Because we know the love Jesus had for His disciples, we know that what He chose to leave them with would not be a worthless trinket, but something truly priceless.
Jesus chose to leave His disciples peace. He chose to give them peace when what He could have given them was limitless. He wasn’t scraping the bottom of the goody bag. He wasn’t haphazardly throwing something out because he’d forgotten all about His departure, and it would have been awkward to leave His disciples empty-handed.
This is how important peace is in one’s life. It’s so important that it was the one thing Jesus gave to those He loved the most while He walked the earth. If you have His peace, the peace He gives which is not as the world gives, though others may quake, though others may rage, though others may hide in fear, His peace will envelop you, and your heart will be neither troubled or afraid.
Some things in life you can do without, while others are indispensable. May we have the wisdom to know which is which, and pursue them accordingly.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.