Of War and Peace

There is a war in our members warring against us all despite our desire to do good. It’s a struggle about who to please in the affairs of life generally and that of ours. Do I please myself, my family, friends, my pastor or other religious leaders? The war or struggle is also a lack of capacity for balance.

“For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. I find then a law, that evil is present with the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭7:15-24 NKJV‬‬

If we acknowledge that the desire to do good and be kind exists, what then is responsible for us acting contrary? That is, contrary to our desire to do and be good.

I believe the answer is because of the presence of sin in the world. Sin is not only in the big things like murder. We sin when we think bad thoughts about others. Gossip is sin. Starting a rumor is sin. So is slander, pilfering at work, covetousness, envy, jealousy, etc. I hope you get it.

When sin is present in the world, it becomes an intentional act to go against the grain. It is so easy to roll with the crowd or majority so as to blend in and not be an outcast. But, I hope that we all acknowledge that the majority can, and are sometimes, wrong. But the cliché, the majority is always right, has misdirected and mis-focused many.

It takes guts to be a lone voice in the wilderness so to speak. It is clouts to speak up and out against what we know to be wrong. No-one might come to your side, but my people, know that God sees you. Even if you don’t believe in Him, I hope you have a conscience (some call it compass) that steers you when you’re alone and especially when you lay your head on your pillow at night to sleep. When that voice whispers in your head, “don’t don’t,” please don’t. It’s simple, right? But not so simple with a few. If you continue to ignore that whisper (soft voice), you begin to sear your conscience (or compass) and it is at that time, without intentional checks, that one gets spiritually, and eventually naturally, lost.

We all struggle in one thing or the other. When you have the true desire to do good, but find yourself doing bad (or evil) continuously, seek help. Knowing where or who to go to for help is a key factor. Confide in someone or call the Office of any Church, Temple, Synagogue, etc. Call somebody for Help.

Without intentionality of being and doing good, the war will never cease within ourselves and peace will elude one. The first place for peace is in our minds. Once in the mind, the peace exudes all over and around us. We’ve all heard another cliché that war is the absence of peace. There is a reason the war is going on. Get to the root sooner than later. It will free you.

For peace to reign, you’ve got to choose it, intentionally. Having the peace will undoubtedly lead you to know who or what to choose when at a crossroad. It will also help with balance in your life.

I pray that the God of Peace visit you today and bless you with His peace that surpasses human understanding. May His peace rest upon you.

Never Ever Give Up

Credits: Unsplash / Tony Eight Media

Once upon a time
I was the life of every party
It ain’t a party
If Joy was not at it.

Everyone who was someone
Clamored to be a friend;
Only the friendship were flaky, shallow,
And all about what’s in it for me.

Fast forward several years
And life happened
And my life turned topsy turvy.

Every friend disappeared
They forgot the good old days
Of when I’d take the blouse off my back
And give it to the one who needed it the most;
And the shoes on my feet
Went to the one who needed it more
And I’d empty my pocket
To share among them all.

Even my family no longer called
They now hovered
Around, over
And on to the next member.

They used to call everyday
Now they barely
Remembered my name
Let alone my number.

It was painful
How could people forget so soon. How could they be so vain.

In a world full of millions of people
Yet, I was lonely.

I felt empty inside and out
And had no friends nor family. To stand by me or lean on
Everyone and everything deserted me.

I wept
Till I could weep no more.
The tears have ceased to flow.

“How many bottles have you filled,
With those tears, Lord”
I ask everyday.
Those tears will become
Your precious gem
That I hope to trade up some day.

Then one day I awoke
It was all a nightmare

Life’s too short to waste
I’ve walked alone too long

In a world full of millions of people
Yet I was lonely

Even those who came near
Seemed so far away
None living in the present.

Lord, catch me
I wanna fly over into Your arms
Please wrap me up
Never to let me go.

But He said
“My daughter
I need you down there
Your purpose is yet unfinished
Many are waiting on you. Get back there
And get the job done.”

So, I did

I went for a long walk at the beach one day

And let loose.

My long weave bouncing from left to right slapping on my soft dark cheeks

The golden sands
Warming my un-manicured feet On a hot summer day
When was the last time
I skipped or danced
Or had a smile on my face

I have allowed those smiles
To turn into frowns
To no one in particular
Only to myself and
Age me twenty years over.

I muttered to noone in particular

But to the breeze
that blew so refreshingly
On my cold cheeks

I had stiffened up
And allowed life to tense me.

Your change can come suddenly

Out of the blues
A real human
Said “hello, my name is Amazing.”

None had said hello to me in years
Though I smile at everyone
Everyday
They just stared at me
With curled-up lips.

I turned around
And with the biggest smile ever
I replied, “ hi, my name is Joy.
I’m the child of the Most High God.”

Wow, I’m the child of Grace; Amazing Grace, that’s my full name.

Mind if I join you on your walk?

Sure
Though inward I felt like saying ‘No.’
Finally, someone noticed me
And actually said, ‘hello.’
And wants to walk with me.

Amazing Grace was waiting on her other friends
They were having a beach party just because

Amazing Grace had arrived earlier than all

The friends trickled in
One after the other

She introduced me to each one

Rich and Wealth live just down the road
And were married to Peace and Joyful

Patience was the glue of the party
She coordinated and checked
Off the friends list
Everyone was present
Except Wisdom

They were getting worried
They called him the ol Sage

Shortly after
Wisdom texted the group

I stopped by a friend who’s visiting from outta town. Okay to invite him, too?
You’ll all love him

They both arrived within ten minutes
Wisdom and Miracles were the most gorgeous guys I’d ever seen
Both standing over six feet tall would take the breath outta any lady

Miracles stared hard at me;
I blushed
Through my dark skin
You could see all the pink.

The oddity was interrupted
By Love, Hope, and Faith.
Who were laughing their hearts out as they joined the group.

Now all the friends had arrived
They invited me to their party
I already felt like I belong.

I married Miracles
Within the year
The group has become
My family
They are friends indeed

My life has never been the same again!

The rest is now
Herstory (my story).

It was a do-over.
That only He could have done;
May you have
A life do-over
The kind you dream of;
Allow Him
To do it His way.
If all the people
Had stayed
I would have been
Too busy with them
And would never have met
My new family.

Everyone needs these friends

Amazing Grace, Rich & Peace, Wealth & Joyful, Patience, Wisdom,
Miracles, Love, Hope, and Faith.

Having them in your life makes life worth living.

Can you think of other such friends everyone need in their lives? Write them in the Comments. May God add them to your life and mine.

Jesus Ministry: Peace

Credits: Unsplash / Sunyu

Peace is a state of stillness, tranquility, harmony, or serenity. A freedom of the mind from agitation, annoyance, distraction, anxiety, warring, or obsession. It is also a state or condition available to people and nations, but not all possesses it.

In the absence of Peace, chaos, or agitation, anxiety, fear, and war, is often the order of the day for the person or nation devoid of peace. We all know the repercussions of such anti-peace/peaceful states. They result in confusion, disorder, disorientation, discord, and utter disarray. Without peace, we can do things haphazardly, make decisions in a rash, and take actions that we ought not to take.

“For God is not a God of disorder but of peace …”‭‭ (1 Corinthians‬ ‭14:33‬)

I propose to you that it is possible to be in peace in the midst of chaos. It is a state of being and knowing that Hod is in control and whatever has come to disturb our peace will soon surely pass away. We abide in the state of peace by the help of the Holy Spirit. And by asking for it. Seek peace and pursue it (1 Peter 3:11b)

Many desire peace and freedom in their minds but don’t know how to obtain it. As with most life conditions, we can be peacefully born and grow peacefully. But for those of us who were not born or growing peacefully, do not despair, we can be gifted. Because Peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22)

I acknowledge that some life experiences could and may have thwarted or disturbed one’s peace, and there are those who have been medically diagnosed with one or more types of mental illnesses or disorders such as anxiety, depression, panic, or some other type of phobia. This post is not to belittle mental diagnosis. God forbid. I acknowledge that it is real. But the post is to offer it as help, in conjunction with any medical, psychiatric, or therapeutic treatments, as I believe that God is able to heal anyone through, and by, His Words.

“He sent out his word and healed them; ...” (Psalms‬ ‭107:20‬)‭‬‬

As a digress, a well-rounded individual will develop him/herself in six main areas. These are spiritually, mentally, financially, physically, socially, and emotionally. (Post for another day)

Jesus is the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6). He left us the Holy Spirit (John 14:26) as our helper in every state. Everything is available to us, but we still have to ask. “He will keep (you) in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in Him.” (Isaiah‬ ‭26:3)‬ ‭‬.

How to: 27 Scriptures To Help

If you desire His Peace, again, you have to ask Him and remind Him of His promises. If we don’t know His promises, how do we know what to ask for?

Fear attacks even the best of us. We can acknowledge that we are afraid, but it’s not okay to stay afraid or fearful for life. You have to desire to want out of the fear. You might know the cause (source or root) of the fear. Great if you do; for example, did you hear something or someone said something fearful or you watched some sad and fearful incident. It’s helpful as it helps to pray specifically against the object of fear. Whether the root of fear is recognizable and know or not, reading these scriptures will help to allay those fears. God’s Words are Spirit and life (John 6:63b). It will not return to God without accomplishing that which it was sent to (Isaiah 55:11). Personalize the scriptures as you deem necessary. For example, “I will not be anxious for anything, I cast my cares on Him, Your peace you left with me, etc. Since we are all different, some might not finish reading the 27 verses before they return to a state of Peace. Others, might have to read them more than once. Read them regularly and as often as you desire.

I have compiled the following 27 God’s Words (aka scriptures or verses) regarding Peace to aid you. They are in the New International Version (NIV). I pray that they minister to you. “May the peace of Christ rule in your hearts” (Colossians‬ ‭3:15‬)

  1. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians‬ ‭4:6-7‬)
  2. “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter‬ ‭5:7‬, Psalm 55:22)
  3. I (Jesus) have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. …” (John‬ ‭16:33‬a)
  4. “Peace 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.” (John‬ ‭14:27‬)
  5. ‭”Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew‬ ‭5:9‬)
  6. “In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.” (Psalms‬ ‭4:8)
  7. ‬ ‭‬‬”May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans‬ ‭15:13‬)
  8. “… And the God of peace will be with you.” (Philippians‬ ‭4:9b‬)
  9. “Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. (Hebrews‬ ‭12:14‬)
  10. ‭”The fruit of that righteousness will be peace; its effect will be quietness and confidence forever. My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.”(Isaiah‬ ‭32:17-18‬)
  11. ‭”Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.”(James‬ ‭3:18‬)
  12. ‭”When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you.”(Luke‬ ‭10:5-6‬)
  13. ‭… the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.” (Romans‬ ‭8:6‬)
  14. ‭“”There is no peace,” says the Lord, “for the wicked.”” (Isaiah‬ ‭48:22‬)
  15. ‭“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” (Romans‬ ‭12:18‬)
  16. ‭”Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” (Ephesians‬ ‭4:3‬)
  17. ‭“Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble.” (Psalms‬ ‭119:165)
  18. ‬ ‭“Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.” (Psalms‬ ‭34:14‬)
  19. ‭“Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. (Romans‬ ‭14:19‬)
  20. ‭“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation (peace) brought me joy.” (Psalms‬ ‭94:19‬)
  21. ‭“For He Himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,” (Ephesians‬ ‭2:14‬)
  22. “A heart at peace gives life to the body, …” (Proverbs‬ ‭14:30‬)
  23. ‭“When the Lord takes pleasure in anyone’s way, he causes their enemies to make peace with them.” (Proverbs‬ ‭16:7‬)
  24. ‭“Those who walk uprightly enter into (Your) Peace; …” (Isaiah‬ ‭57:2‬)
  25. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”(Matthew‬ ‭6:34‬)
  26. “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah‬ ‭41:10‬)‭
  27. “It is to one’s honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel.” (Proverbs‬ ‭20:3‬)

My Prayer of Peace for You

  • May the Lord of Peace Himself turn His face towards you, give you and bless you with His peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.” (Numbers‬ ‭6:26, 2 Thessalonians‬ ‭3:16‬), Psalms‬ ‭29:11‬b
  • May His mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance.” (Jude‬ ‭1:2‬)‭
  • May all your children be taught by the Lord, and great will be their peace.” (Isaiah‬ ‭54:13‬)‭

“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.” (2 Corinthians‬ ‭13:11, ‬Romans‬ ‭15:33‬)

Credits: Unsplash / Priscilla Du Preez