#slowitdownSunday / peace, peace, wonderful peace

Earlier this morning I read from the book of John, Chapter 14. This reading is part of the 40 Days of Lent Bible Study that I’m reading through. If you’ve never done a study of the last week Jesus had on earth, I would highly recommend it. It really changes your perspective around Easter and all that happened!

The words have stayed with me all day. Tonight, I’d like to challenge you to truly #slowitdownSunday and take 5 minutes to read these 31 verses:

Jesus Comforts His Disciples
1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God ; believe also in me. 2My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4You know the way to the place where I am going.”
Jesus the Way to the Father
5Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
6Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
8Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
9Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 12Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit
15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
22Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, “But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?”
23Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.
25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
28 “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe. 30I will not say much more to you, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold over me, 31but he comes so that the world may learn that I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me.
“Come now; let us leave.

Here’s what happened right before Jesus had this conversation with his disciples that we read above:

– They gather for the Last Supper and Jesus washed the feet of the disciples
– Jesus predicts that Judas will betray him and Judas leaves the dinner
– The prediction of Peter’s denial of even knowing Jesus – 3x before the rooster crows

Jesus begins to prepare the disciples for his departure and explains his relationship with the Father.

There are so many familiar words in this passage: let not your hearts be troubled, I go to prepare a place – my Father’s house has many rooms, I am the way, the truth and the life – no one comes to the Father except through me, ask for anything in my name and I will do it, if you love me obey my commandments, peace I leave with you – my peace I give to you.

I honestly did not realize how many of these scriptures came from this one chapter in the Bible! How about you? There’s so many songs too!! 🙂

This chapter feels like a heartfelt conversation between Jesus and his disciples where they are trying their best to understand everything. They ask questions, Jesus gives answers. It’s here that we see how human they really were – a lot like us, actually!

If I had been in the room with Jesus, I think the biggest relief would have come when He said these words:

“All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” John 14:25-26

WHEW!!!

I imagine it to be a little like this: You’re taking a class where you know there is going to be a test. The professor is speaking a mile a minute and your poor hand can’t keep up with taking notes. You start sweating bullets and begin to think there is no way that you’ll ever get all of this down….THEN – the professor tells you, “Oh, don’t worry about taking notes – just pay attention! I’m going to give you all of my slides and notes at the end of class for you to study. It will have everything you need to prepare for the test! Just relax and listen.”

And at that moment, you toss the pencil aside, lean back and BREATHE.

Maybe the disciples did just that – calmed down and just tried to take it all in. Then Jesus follows it up by saying that he is leaving them with PEACE. And His peace is nothing like what they will ever find in the world.

Jesus does the same for us. We don’t have to worry about keeping up and taking notes and getting it all done. We’ll never measure up to the test of perfection. Life gets messy and we start sweating bullets and doubt starts creeping in. Our Jesus tells us not to worry, not to be troubled, not to stress over our mess! Yes, he’s got it all taken care of. And that Advocate, the Holy Spirit, is still around to teach us and remind us of everything Jesus said. He’s available 24/7 – all we have to do is take advantage of the power that He offers. And oh yeah, He gives PEACE.

slow it down sunday peace the daily starr

“Peace, peace, wonderful peace. Flowing down from the Father above. Sweep over my spirit forever I pray, in fathomless billows of love.”

Proverb of the Day:
Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble with it. [Proverbs 15:16 ESV]

~Starr

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2 replies to “#slowitdownSunday / peace, peace, wonderful peace

  1. Such truth in those words. I start a new job tomorrow-remember I was looking- it is a dream. God is good. Wanted to check in and see how your sister in law is doing? Still praying for all of you. Thank you so much for being you. You are a daily blessing in my life now. Gina H.

  2. Gina! So happy to hear about your job. I have been praying for you – and my kids too, even though they have no idea who you are 🙂 Thank you so much for praying for Christy. She was just recently moved to the Progressive Unit, which is an improvement – but they are trying to figure out why her blood pressure keeps spiking. Please keep her and her parents in your prayers! And thank you for reading!!!

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