Here is a Q & A for those of you who have been Christians for some time and have yet to understand when or how we receive peace and joy from Jesus. I called myself a Christian for a long time before I understood so I am passing this along to you because there is no greater peace and joy than that from Christ…but you have to actually receive it. I urge you to be honest with yourselves as to if you truly are experiencing the peace of Christ. If not, it’s ok, read on.
Q. When does peace actually come to the person who believes in Christ?
A. I used to think that just believing that Christ died for my sins was “believing in Christ” but it’s actually the complete understanding of what He has done for me. Once you understand this, the peace and joy come!
Q. What is it that Christ actually did for me?
A. To understand this fully, you have to understand your heart. The heart is desperately sick. We have to fully understand our plight before we can fully understand how God rescued us from it.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9
You don’t have to take my word for it. You should take the Bible’s word for it, but even if you don’t do that, take a moment and ask God to reveal to you your sin. It may not be right after you pray the prayer, but He will. You will be disgusted and you will be thankful He has saved us.
Q. How do I gain peace from knowing that I am terrible?
A. Once God opens your eyes to your issues, a number of things happen. You are so thankful that the God of the Universe took time to show you the truth. You are so thankful that He came to earth and took the punishment that you now know you deserve. You are at peace with God.
Again, this isn’t something that someone can convince you of. You must take time to get alone with God and ask Him to open your eyes and increase your faith. Be brave.
Q. Where does joy come in?
A. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
God has chosen to reveal His truths to you. You prayed, and He answered. You have found your purpose in life that has eternal benefits. If that doesn’t bring you joy, again, ask God to show you His truth. He will.
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7
Q. Why would someone not ask God to open their eyes?
A. Because they want to remain blind. This may seem strange but it’s true. Our minds can’t imagine that what we aren’t desiring could actually be better. We naturally desire the things of this world. We must pray and ask God to change us even though we currently have these worldly desires.
When I was pregnant with Anna, I did NOT want a girl (I know, terrible. I blame hormones!) I wanted another boy. I couldn’t imagine how having a girl was going to work out because I only knew how great having a boy was. But now I have a girl and she is absolutely wonderful! Of course, she is! I can’t believe I ever thought it would be otherwise. But I couldn’t see it before. We must believe in things that haven’t been shown to us yet. We must want things that we don’t want yet. ASK!
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. Romans 8:5
Q. So do I just wait for godly thoughts to pop into my head and my heart to suddenly be pure?
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33
Why would God have left a Bible for us if He didn’t want us to read it? God’s word is powerful and He reveals Himself through it. Ask…and then SEEK Him in His word!
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
Then pray. But get serious. Be reverent. He is God.
He fulfills the desires of those who fear Him; He hears their cry and saves them.
Do you even fear God? Is He even hearing your prayers?
Q. How in the world does all of this bring peace and joy? Find out how terrible I am? Give up all my wants? Be fearful of God?
A. I’m telling you, it really is like me not knowing that I was going to like having a girl. Just ask, seek, and knock and you will understand. What do you have to lose? What do you have to gain?
Seeking peace and joy? Ask God to open your eyes, Seek Him through His word. Knock. The door will be opened. I have full confidence in this.
Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all. 2 Thessalonians 3:15