Obedience to God is the key to so many of the things we desire from Him. I am not referring to material things or things on our ďwish listĒ, or to getting our own way all the time. Itís not about having all of our prayers answered just the way we want them or living in a perfect world where there are no problems and life is easy. It also isnít about a life of wealth and health and utter bliss.
If you are looking for a life where true love exists with no heartaches, and your heart can be at peace when everything around you is failing Ė going wrong in almost every sense of the word Ė then, I believe this series of devotionals can help you.
I'm gong to write about finding The Way - true peace in the midst of every storm. It is about learning to trust in the One True Source that can give you everything you need. It is about following through. It is about timing Ė His timing.
My challenge to you and my purpose in writing this is for you to consider that God wants more of you Ė not for you to DO more Ė but for fellowship and friendship with Him.
Where do you look for peace?
Godís Word, is real and sharper than a two-edged sword. It really is. It is so alive and so full of Godís love for you and His direction for every situation in your life. You can have peace Ė the kind of peace that canít be explained. Itís a peace you cannot find in all your money. You canít find it in your mate, or your children or your grandchildren. It isnít in the toys you love. These are ways to spend your time that may occupy your time and distract you. They may take your mind far away from reality. But these are only temporary fixes.
Your peace wonít come from drugs, alcohol, sex or food. These things may help dull your senses and satisfy your flesh. However, none of these things really give you the peace in your heart you so need when your life is falling apart and your heart is breaking.
We have all seen how hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters, can wipe away all the precious material possessions we all hold on to. When some sort of catastrophe visits our doorstep and begins to take away all that we have held in our minds to be the things that make us who we are, what happens to our peace then? Who do we turn to?
What happens when the world as we know it Ė our world Ė is shattered and everything we found our comfort and contentment in fails us? We try to hold it together. We do all we can to make it right again. We struggle and fight within ourselves until we feel our hearts will never mend. We cry out to God and make vows and promises we canít keep. We try to bargain with God and plead with Him to make everything okay again. Weíre disappointed and angry when He doesnít jump in there and make miracles happen to prove He is God and to show us He will make things okay for us again.
What did I do wrong?
We even come to a point where weíre angry at Him and embarrassed that He could let us down in such a way that our friends think we couldnít be living right. Surely, we must not be following all of the rules. There must have been something different we could have done. If we had, our lives would be proof of it. We would have everything in order and we would be like the Joneses Ė with perfect houses full of goodies and great cars and beautiful and perfect, well-behaved children. We would have lots of friends and the most up-to-date clothes Ė whatever toys our hearts delight in Ė great health Ė perfect holiday celebrations and nothing to worry about. That would prove God loves us and weíre living the good life, wouldnít it?
After all, God said, ďDelight yourself in Me and I will give you the desires of your heartĒ. He said it Ė did He mean it or not? Well, if I donít have everything my heart desires, does that mean Iím not good enough or that I am not doing enough for God? Okay, then. Iíll join one more Bible Study or volunteer for a committee to show just how much of a Christian I am. Iíll work a little harder at making everyone see what good person I am. Iíll lose some weight and bring my wardrobe up to date Ė dye my hair - have some cosmetic surgery. Then everyone will see that I still have what it takes. Theyíll envy me and see what a good person I am. Iíll surely feel better about myself.
I know something that will really help me feel better. Iíll buy some more toys. Iíll get new furniture or a big new car Ė a bigger, newer, faster computer Ė the most up to date cell-phone or smart phone.
Iíll drink away my sorrow or my shortcomings. Iíll take a few more pills so I wonít have to think about all of the things that bother me. Iíll join another group. Iíll find another mate. Iíll turn up the volume on my IPOD and drown out everything that is trying to bring me down. Iíll eat some comfort food. Iíll buy something that will make me feel better.
Have you gotten the picture? Do you see what we do Ė what we call living? Can you see what lengths we go to so that we will have peace and joy? Do any of them work for you when your life is falling apart or when you are hurting so much inside? Do any of these things last when you are all alone?
What, then, if anything, is the answer? Where can I find peace and joy? How can I be content? Is it possible?