Let me give you one of the most beautiful statements ever uttered: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
There is music in these words, spoken by Jesus in John 14. They fall upon the mind like light, with a benediction in their touch.
Peace I leave with you…let not your heart be troubled. Marvelous words which speak clearly their message of hope!
We ought to use such words more and more, for our life consists of that with which we fill our minds. There is remarkable therapeutic value in great words, particularly words from the Scriptures. Store your mind with these words, bring them out as needed, let them sink deeply into the consciousness until they dominate your thoughts. That is the way to get the peace of God in your very fiber.
There is peace in watching the sea come rolling in, then drawing back, the surge of great enormous power against the rocks roaring in, then sucking out again with tremendous force. Peace is felt on a soft summer day in hearing water lapping softly on shores of sand, or the light whisper of the wind in the tall and ancient pine trees or the buzzing of bees in a meadow in deep summer.
All of these bring peace to the soul. But how do you get the kind of peace that is deep, inexhaustible and lasting? Merely wishing for it or thinking about it will not bring it.
God’s peace. God’s peace can be yours, but to attain it you have to start practicing it. Perhaps one reason why you are high-strung or lacking in control is because for a long time you have been practicing nervousness and tension—not consciously or willfully, of course. In spiritual values as well as in other skills, you only get proficiency by practice.
You cannot play the piano without practice; you cannot play golf without practice; neither can you become skillful in the spiritual life without practice. We are told to practice the presence of God. We must also practice the peace of God.
Begin today to diligently practice the peace of God, and after a while the peace of God will become an automatic process in you. How do you practice the peace of God? Condition your mind to live in high areas of peace. Set out in the morning saying, “I am going to attempt for as many minutes as possible during this day to keep God in my thoughts.”
Also, to calm nerves we must practice God’s peace in the body. The relationship of the body—to mental states and even to spiritual states—is a widely accepted fact. Get the body into a quiet state, and presently the mind and the soul tend to become quiet and calm, too. Practice breathing in the peace of God and breathing out all tension and worry. Try that six times a minute, deeply and prayerfully, while at the same time conceiving of yourself as taking in God’s peace.
Then there is this final thing. What is it that causes people’s nerves to become so severely agitated that life seems all bustle and burden? It is not the confusion of this life; it is not the noise and tumult in the world. It is, rather, the evil things that men do. It is the guilt they have in their natures, the wrong that they continually commit. Therefore, in order to have God’s peace, you may have to quit something.
Is something jeopardizing your spiritual well-being and also putting your physical health at risk? It is a strange thing—guilt in your mind sends out a disturbance and manifests itself in the nerves and in the heart and in the blood pressure. To have calmness, get rid of the impediments in your mind and ask God to transform you by His healing touch.
When Almighty God touches the secret place of the soul and cleanses it, you will know what He means when He says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” Your whole being will be soothed by the balm of His perfect peace.
This article is excerpted from Plus Magazine.