My Peace I Give You – Purity 520
Purity 521 09/11/2021 Purity 521 Podcast
Today’s photo of a spectacular Hudson Valley sunset comes to us from a couple who generously decided to share the view from their favorite spot to watch sunsets on social media. However, I noticed that they wisely didn’t disclose the location of their favorite spot, teaching us that there are somethings that we should enjoy and keep to ourselves especially when inviting other people in may disrupt the peace that we have found.
It's Saturday, and it’s the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that took place on 9/11/2001. The events on that terrible day, and the continuing war on terror that followed, showed us that our sense of peace and safety could be taken from us in a moment. It was a harsh reminder that there is evil in this world and that no matter what measures we put in place our security could be compromised.
However, that day also taught us about the value and brevity of human life and the incredible acts of love and heroism that people can do to protect it and save it. For out of the stories of loss and death, we also heard of incredible stories that spoke of love and survival. Even in the worst of times, the light of hope and love shines in the darkness.
In the wake of that day many people sought to make sense of it all and their ideas about God were challenged as the perpetrators of these crimes against humanity claimed to do it for God. Others asked how God could allow things like this to happen. Still others drew together and found comfort by drawing close to God in corporate gatherings or private prayer.
As for the terrorists, they were deceived. The word of God tells us:
1 John 4:20 (NKJV)
20 If someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?
Christ’s ministry on earth shows us that God isn’t calling us to kill in His name.
As for suffering, Christ himself acknowledged that suffering can and will happen to the just as well as the unjust, and recommends one course of action for all: He addressed this in:
Luke 13:4-5 (NKJV) where He said:
4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem?
5 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish."
Translation? Bad things happen to good people. Jesus was straight about that but He also clear that we should all repent because He didn’t want us to perish. As He said in
John 3:17 (NKJV)
17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
So as we reflect on that terrible day 20 years ago, or just try to move on with our lives today. It is my prayer that all my friends remember how people turned to the Lord and found peace in His presence. The peace people found in the Lord 20 years ago is still available today and its isn’t just reserved for times of suffering. Christ came to give us peace with God, for He said:
John 14:27 (NKJV)
27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Christ doesn’t want us to seek some form of peace that is based on creating the right circumstances in the world that can be taken away. He wanted to give us a peace that couldn’t change, pass away, or be taken from us. He didn’t want our hearts to be troubled and He didn’t want us to be afraid.
If you don’t have faith or are not sure about Jesus, ask God to reveal the truth to you for if you seek Him, you will find Him. The Lord wants you to find peace with Him through faith in Jesus Christ.
If you have made Christ your Lord and Savior, rejoice, and share the love and peace of the Lord with those around you.
In this world bad things will happen, but with the Lord we can have peace in the midst of the storm or even in the darkest night. Our purpose in Christ is to know His peace and share it with the world, For He said:
John 16:33 (NKJV)
33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."
So keep walking and talking with God, enjoy His peace today and every day. Share the love of the Lord with those around you and defy the powers of darkness by living free in the peace and love of the Lord.
Today’s verse is drawn from” from the Dr. Charles Stanley’s In Touch Ministries provided resource: “Freedom: Our Life in Christ” Memory Verse Cards set:
This morning’s meditation verse is:
Psalm 56:4 (NASB)
4 In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me?
Today’s verse tells us of the value of God’s word and of the remedy to fear: trusting God.
You know sometimes I feel that the message to read the word of God falls on deaf ears. It is none of my business what someone’s Bible study habits are but sometimes I get the feeling that some of the people I counsel, disciple, encourage, teach, or spend time with don’t have a regular practice of reading God’s word and that they are just following faith concepts that they have heard from pastors or that they “already know”.
To be honest, sometimes I think of my self that way! Sometimes in my walk, I look at my experience and question if I am just walking along with a general “Christian disciple’s philosophy” and am neglecting the study of the word that my Christian philosophy is based on.
While I blog 6 days a week, insights, and encouragements about living a Christian disciple’s lifestyle, on occasion I will miss actually sitting down and reading some scripture. When that happens I feel like I missed something and make a point of to get back on track the next day because the word is something that we should praise, as today’s verse points out.
The wisdom and comfort of God’s word educates and transforms us. It is only through reading, studying, and meditating on God’s word that it is possible to develop a deep trust of God and a full understanding of we are in Christ. It is the truths in scripture of who we are in Christ that give us the confidence to walk out our faith on a daily basis.
When we “get it”, when we accept God’s word as true to us personally, we gain the assurance of our salvation and our freedom from sin and death.
When we claim our freedom in Christ, we can trust the Lord and cast out fear! We can be bold and face any trial or tribulation with peace. When we really trust God, we know that there is nothing that mere men can do to us that will separate us from His love or change who we are in Christ.
So Trust in the Lord and fear not. Mere men can not change your position in Christ or take away the peace that the Lord gives you.
But if you are lax in your commitment to read His word, I encourage you to make a regular practice of reading it on a daily basis because His word is wonderful and worthy of praise. It can be an ever present comfort in our walk and will transform the minds and hearts of the faithful Christian who endeavors to search its depths of wisdom and receive its blessings for life and godliness.
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue to share from June Hunt’s Boundaries: How to Set Them, How to Keep Them.
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase June Hunt’s books for your own private study and to support her work. If you need this title you can find it online at several sites for less than $5.00:
C. What Are Signs of Crossed Boundary Lines?
For some, Tonya Harding's repercussions . . . don't go far enough.
Although she is charged with criminal activity following the assault, both her ex-husband and bodyguard claim she had prior knowledge of the attack and even helped plan it. And the final "go-ahead" to maim Nancy Kerrigan . . . is given by Tonya, according to her ex-husband.
District Attorney Norman Frink says there is " . . . substantial evidence to support Ms. Harding's involvement prior to the assault. She's not going to plead guilty to it, but I think the facts speak for themselves." Had a legal agreement not been reached concerning Tonya, Frink had planned to pursue indictments on other charges.
Tonya may be concealing prior involvement, but God sees it all. . . .
"For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open."
Thank goodness for instant replay! In sports, as in life, those too close to the action or too far from it are not always able to see when rules are broken, when boundary lines are knowingly or unknowingly crossed. And since winning is at stake, important sporting events are recorded by strategically positioned cameras so that every action can be replayed for all to see and for all to judge.
In the case of personal boundaries, no instant replay cameras keep a vigilant eye on us, but there is One whose eyes see it all, for He never slumbers or sleeps or looks away from us . . . not even for an instant. His eyes steadily record our every move; His mind is constantly aware of our thoughts. His ears are always tuned into our words. His heart is forever discerning our motives.
And with His Spirit empowering us and His written word guiding us, He can conform us to Christ by keeping our boundaries in check and accomplishing His purposes in and through us. . . .
"We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters."
Signs of Crossed Boundary Lines
People who grow up with little or no boundaries are accustomed to having their legitimate personal rights violated and common societal norms ignored. Mistreatment is commonplace, and in their frustration or attempt at self-preservation, people develop a pattern of mistreating others as well, often without knowing what they are doing or why.
Their experience becomes their reality, and they simply live what they learn—they do to others what is done to them. In so doing, overtime those with crossed boundary lines tend to exhibit the following signs:
Confrontation skills are virtually nonexistent or they are brutal and ineffective. Rather than dealing directly with each other, they triangulate, are emotionally, verbally, or physically abusive, or they cross other communication boundaries.
Responsibility regarding personal actions is assigned to others. Denial, justification, blame games, guilt trips, and other forms of manipulation replace assuming responsibility for their own inappropriate actions. Many grown children remain financially dependent on parents well into adulthood and many times even after they are married.
Openness, honesty, and transparency are nonexistent. At the very least these skills that are critical for developing true intimacy in relationships are considered foolish and unnecessary or, at worst, threatening and terrifying.
Secrecy is rampant, yet necessary for survival because trust is scarce and people are emotionally distant from one another as a means not only of self-defense but also self-preservation. This is especially true in cases where sexual boundaries have been violated or other forms of severe abuse have occurred.
Systems for enforcing logical repercussions are also nonexistent as are systems of administering rewards for positive behaviors. Inconsistency reigns in every area and confusion and distrust are the result.
Envy is commonplace because no one feels genuinely valued for who they are and what they do. Insecurity is felt by all. Therefore, everyone constantly vies for attention, affirmation, acceptance, and a sense of approval. When one person's performance outshines another's, envy is the natural by-product.
Defensive behaviors are well-established and reflect a need to deny feelings of being unloved, insignificant, and insecure. Adult daughters still want to be "daddy's little princess" and grown sons want to be "mommy's little prince" rather than becoming emotionally invested and committed to their spouses.
The process of facing the fact that personal boundaries have been repeatedly crossed and then working through the resulting pain of that awareness and making necessary changes takes courage, tenacity, and hope. This is especially true when other family members do not see the need for change or feel the need for healing.
Thankfully, we have a God who is able and willing to not only meet our needs but to give us far more than we could ever ask or imagine. . . .
"I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord's holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."
Biblical Counseling Keys: Boundaries: How to See Them - How to Keep Them.
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