It’s a guest post day and y’all are going to love this one! Laura Ashley Smith and I have met only once- while I was having coffee with a mutual friend. We instantly connected over our love for writing and theology- and as you will see from her writing below, it is a gift God has given to her in abundance! If you are looking for more great encouragement that is graciously spoken and deeply rooted in His Word, you will definitely want to follow her over on IG @SheWalksWorthyBlog Without further ado, here is Mrs. Laura Ashley sharing about Christ’s perfect peace:
My Peace I Give To You…
Some of the final hours of the life of Jesus were spent celebrating Passover with His disciples at the last supper. He knew the details of the events that were about to unfold through His execution and that He would be separated from His Father as He took the punishment for all our sins. He knew that the disciples would be troubled, afraid, confused, devastated and overwhelmed with anxiety at the events that would soon follow with His crucifixion. The disciples had been in His presence for three years of His earthly ministry, and now He would leave them, and not only that, they would watch Him hang on the cross. Knowing this, Jesus spoke to calm and to comfort them, promising them the Holy Spirit as their Helper, and leaving them with His peace. He was proclaiming true peace, His peace, that was far different from the empty peace the world offers.
John 14:26-27 says:
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (ESV)
When the flesh of Jesus was torn open with a whip, He had peace. When the crown of thorns was placed on His head, He had peace. When His hands and feet were nailed to the cross, He had peace. In the same way, when believers face trials and suffering, we too can experience His peace. In Philippians 4:6-7, Paul refers to His peace as a peace that guards our hearts and minds and surpasses all understanding. It says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (ESV)
In His peace, Jesus provided an answer for our anxious hearts. His peace invades our lives as Christian’s and far surpasses our circumstances and understandings. Through the lens of the world, we will not be able to explain why we have such peace in certain circumstances, except that it is His supernatural and divine peace that has replaced our anxiety-filled hearts. His peace will guard our hearts, casting out all anxiety.
When the early church was facing persecution for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, His peace was available to them. They devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching, to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer (Acts 2:42). Their devotion to these things was crucial to cultivating peace in their lives. The source of the disciple’s peace and our peace comes from our Savior who not only suffered and died but also rose again and is seated on the throne at the right hand of the Father. So how do we cultivate His peace in our lives?
We must come to His throne through…
• Prayer– With a humble and thankful heart, pray about everything. Those who pray continually are peaceful people. God’s peace will dwell in the hearts of those who align themselves with His will, and those who have disciplined their hearts and minds through prayer. He promises to guard our hearts and minds against anxious thoughts (Philippians 4:6-7). The early church disciples were in the center of God’s will, and there they found His peace, amidst the suffering and persecution they faced.
• Worship– Spend time in worship, expressing your reverence and adoration to God. The early church worshipped together, but most importantly, they offered their lives as living sacrifices as their spiritual act of worship (Romans 12:1). We experience His peace through surrender, with our hearts and minds postured in reverent worship.
• His Word– Spend time studying His Word, allowing it to renew your mind. We do not conform to the patterns of this world, more specifically, the peace that the world offers, when we allow His Word to transform our hearts and minds (Romans 12:2). Through trials and testing, we can have His peace and be in His will, being able to discern what is acceptable and perfect.
His Peace is For You
The peace that the world offers is fragile and fleeting. It is circumstantial according to whether everything is going “well” or not. To the world, it did not look like the life of Jesus was going to end well but He was in the center of His Father’s will. Despite the suffering He endured, He had true peace. This same peace is available to us and provides comfort in times when we have an anxious heart.
For the one who is battling illness, for the single mom, for the missionary spreading the gospel to unreached people groups, and even for you, His peace is available. I encourage you to pray. Pray about the things going well in your life. Pray about the things you can’t control in your life, releasing them to Jesus and laying them at the throne. Come to Him through His Word, through worship, and through prayer, thanking Him for those things and His peace will guard your hearts and minds in Him.
Through His death, Jesus made it possible for the sinner to have peace with God. He gave us the gift of His peace and through our Helper, the Holy Spirit, He promises us that if we pray with humble and thankful hearts, He WILL give us His perfect peace. Ultimately, His peace gives us hope that we can cling to, knowing that we will experience the fullness of His perfect peace in His coming kingdom.
Meet Laura Ashely Smith
Laura Ashley Smith is a pastor’s wife in East Texas and a brand new mom to a sweet little boy! She has her bachelors degree in Music Education with a concentration in voice from Sul Ross State University and her masters degree in Christian Ministry with a concentration in worship from Liberty University. She is called to serve alongside her husband in his ministry as Senior Pastor. She enjoys singing and leading in worship. She loves women’s ministry and genuinely desires to see women living out the Gospel together. One of her favorite things to do is share sweet conversation over coffee with a friend. She has a deep desire to study God’s word and point others to what it says. She is a co-writer along with her sister for She Walks Worthy, a blog encouraging women from a biblical perspective to walk worthy in every area of their lives.
Are You Ready to Cultivate a Peaceful Heart?
All this month, I am offering a free, 7-day Faithful Hearts Study on peace. It’s all a part of our year-long conversation about cultivating a faithful heart amid a frenzied world. You can check out a sample of the study by clicking here or request your copy by filling out the form below!