New Year, New Peace

We all were eager to end 2020 to begin a new year after the year we have had last year. It is good to have a positive attitude and hope for the future but simply changing the number on the calendar’s year won’t magically change things.

Phillipians 3:13-14 tells us that “I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”

Things will be no different in 2021 unless we reach forward and fulfilling our calling that Christ has given each one of us.

When people say “calling” most immediately think of preachers or someone in a church leadership position but not everyone are preachers or have a theology degree behind our names. Our calling is to do what we can do to point people to Christ. You don’t have to be a spiritual superstar to do that. You don’t have to preach to people, just point them to Christ. He is our hope and help in this new year. Even if more storms come into our lives, Christ can be our peace.

So what exactly is this peace that Christ can give us when we are sick or losing our business or when our lives are falling apart?

I honestly don’t know what it is or how it works. I just know that it can work if you commit to it. In fact, Jesus told us that we wouldn’t be able to understand the peace that He gives anyway. (Philippians 4:7). Just because we don’t “understand” it doesn’t mean it’s not possible.

I have experienced this peace myself and I know it works until you start trying to understand it or look at the situation instead of trusting in God. Time and again we must put our trust in God and leave the results to Him.

Easy to do? Absolutely not. We are human and we want results. We are impatient and we want to MAKE things happen. Believe me, I am not the expert. I am often the student who has to learn this way over and over again.

It takes incredible faith to let it go and let God take care of things. Peace isn’t something we can find in something tangible. We can’t drink it, we can’t touch it and there is no prescription for it. There is an old saying that goes “Know God, Know Peace. No God, No Peace.”

If we have another year like we had last year, we are going to need His peace to get through it.

Although we can’t understand the peace that Christ can give us, is there anything we can do to make ourselves open to it?

Here are some things that will help:

  • Have some quiet time – you would be surprised how just a few minutes of quiet time will help you to make room for peace. You don’t have to spend hours of meditation. Just start small. Begin with 5-7 minutes. Set your alarm and do it. Just sit in silence.
  • Put the phone down – unplug from social media. Take a break from your phone. Take a timeout from your phone and let your mind breathe.
  • Sing – find a song that encourages you and sing it. The right songs can make a huge difference. I can’t tell you how many times I have found the right song at the right time.
  • Encourage others – nothing helps you more than encouraging others. Be kind to people. Be someone’s answer to prayer.
  • Do what you can, not what you can’t – Know your limitations and let it go. Don’t try to control things that you can’t control.

The new year will be filled with challenges but it also has a place for peace. Give the peace of Christ a chance. Here’s a line from the song “Peace be Still” by The Belonging Co. featuring Lauren Daigle:

Peace be still
You are here so it is well 
Even when my eyes can't see
I will trust the voice that speaks.