The entire chapter of John 14 contains promises and today’s focus is that Jesus’ own
unshakable peace will be ours. In the verse before, we are told the Holy Spirit, an ever-present resource, teaches us all we need to know to respond to the Lord daily, while giving us an inner peace that is independent of our circumstances. As we begin the New Year we attempt to rely on God’s love with renewed hope and energy.
What are your feelings as you read – “Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” To me it means to stop allowing myself to become agitated and disturbed or
permit myself to be fearful and unsettled. Is this easy, no. It takes ongoing faith to keep our
eyes on the Lord, not the difficult circumstances. Remember what you focus on will gainstrength. My choice is to focus on God’s enduring love. “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good His mercy endures forever!” Psalm 107:1. As I pause and reflect on the countless blessings received from God, I find comfort knowing that His love endures forever, enveloping me in His care.
Beginning a New Year is a perfect time for letting go of past mistakes and regrets. Can
we trust God’s grace and forgiveness and look forward to the fresh start offered to us? God has
a unique plan for each of us, designed to give us hope. The following Scripture was written
during a time of exile and pain. Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know well the plans I have in mind for
you – oracle of the Lord – plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of
hope.” We place our future in loving hands and pray for wisdom and courage to walk in God’s
ways, filled with hope. We keep peace within ourselves and all else will follow.
As a caretaker, ask yourself, do you look for the light when weighed down by worry or
do you settle yourself in the darkness? I read recently, it’s human to fall into a pit, but not to
decorate it! Brief moments of despair cannot be helped for there is a lot on our plates. Some
people curse and live in the darkness. Others trust and are transformed by it. Which will you
choose this year? Whatever trials weigh you down, there is grace to be found.
The gift of peace is not to be underestimated. When you are tempted to lose your
peace, reflect on ‘What is the cost? Is it worth it?’ I like this inspiring quote from Dale Evans
Rogers, “Everyday we live is a priceless gift of God, loaded with possibilities to learn somethingnew, to gain fresh insights.” May we receive further wisdom in ’24 and live the verse in Isaiah 26:3, “With firm purpose You maintain peace; in peace, because of our trust in You.”