Allow God To Work
There is no doubt that God is always at work (John 5:17). He continues to sustain the universe He has created (Hebrews 1:3) and is active in promoting good things for His people (Romans 8:28). He is continually at work in every believer, motivating us to do what is good and empowering us to achieve it (Philippians 2:13). The question is, do we let Him work in our lives, and in the lives of other believers in the fellowship, or do we get in the way, blocking His power and grace?
Paul commands, "Let the peace of Christ rule ... ". Without allowing Jesus the freedom to operate in your heart, you will be little more than a religious legalist - trying to do the best but lacking the wisdom or power (2 Timothy 3:5); and lacking the peace of God who holds our hearts and minds together, both focussed on pleasing Him. The word 'rule' was also used to mean 'umpire' in sport. The peace of God is present when we are working with God and He is pleased. When we resist or disobey Him, deciding that our way is better than His, we have no peace (Isaiah 48:22). God gives a sanctified quietness and ease of spirit when we are walking harmoniously with Him (Isaiah 57:2).
“Let the message of Christ dwell among you …” When Christ is welcomed as King, He brings peace to those who obey Him. When we meditate on His Word, we are led to see how God's peace can be applied in everyday situations and we have the wisdom to teach others too. When all that happens, we are liberated with a thankful heart to worship the Lord. There is no peaceful confidence for believers who ignore God’s Word, because they will inevitably avoid the hard challenges of discipleship. They may claim to have peace because they are enjoying themselves; but they know they do not have God’s peace because they are not diligent to pursue what pleases Him (Ephesians 5:8-10).
For many, the busyness of life with its priorities and deadlines, relationships and finance seems to forbid God to invade. In fact, it is we who make those choices: it is our minds and hearts that decide to prioritise or de-prioritise our Saviour. A calm analysis says that is stupid, and it is. If we lose sight of Christ who defines peace and brings peace, we cannot be at peace with ourselves or others. If we are unsure what is right and wrong, we will always be worried and fearful before God - whereas He wants us to be joyful with hearts full of worship. So, it is time to reassess the priorities of life. God first and everything else second! Peace with God must be top of the objectives for every day along with a sober meditation of His Word. The world will never encourage you to be right for heaven, so make the choices which disable its veto on your right to be close to Christ.
© Dr Paul Adams