‘Know that the LORD is God. It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture.’ Psalm 100:3 (NIV)
I often reflect on peace. There are lots of different kinds of peace: peace with a decision we’ve made; peace of mind; peace with a life situation; peace with other countries; peace with oneself.
But the peace I crave is the peace of the LORD. Whether in the valley, or on the mountain top, it is the greatest peace of all. He is happy to provide us with His peace. He is our Creator. He loves us and wants what is best for us. In my humble opinion, our state of peace is of great importance to Him. Why? When we are at peace He sees we are trusting in Him.
I had a dear friend who attended our church. She was a sweet lady, and she often asked me when I was going to sing. I sang a special at church the first time I met her, and she couldn’t say enough good things about it. I also sang with the senior adult band at the time, so she was able to hear me sing in class. She loved music, and she loved people. I came to love her and value her greatly.
A few years ago she was diagnosed with throat cancer. We thought she would be able to have treatment, but her condition was beyond that. She had been admitted to the hospital I work at, and her son came to my office and told me she wanted to see me. He told me about her prognosis. I was upset, and nervous about seeing her. What would I say; what could I say?
We arrived at her room, which was filled with family. I went to her side and hugged her. I could not help but drop a tear or two, and she wiped them away. I told her Jesus was always with her. She told me this, ‘He has always taken care of me, all my life, in the good times and in the bad. Why would I think He wouldn’t take care of me now? I am not afraid. I have perfect peace.’ The smile on her face was radiant!
I went twice a week to visit her at her home. She lived much longer than the few days expected. Early on, she asked our senior band, which was no longer together, to sing at her funeral. She gave us two songs, but the one she favored was ‘Peace In The Valley’. I had heard it for years, but had never actually sang it. Now I equated peace with her. When I stood and sang that song with the band, my heart, which I thought was broken, came alive again, and I found joy in her circumstances. For you see, she was at peace. She was with Jesus, who she absolutely trusted. He had made her way easy, without a lot of pain. He was her hope. And He is Our Hope. He is the Prince of Peace.
‘After the night, the morning, bidding all darkness cease, after life’s cares and sorrows, the comfort and sweetness of peace.’ — Helen Steiner Rice