Why Some People Have Peace And Others Do Not
By Bill Elliff
“Those who love Your law have great peace, and nothing causes them to stumble” (Psa. 119:165).
There are people who are in perpetual turmoil. Life is always tumultuous to them. They are agitated and bothered, always in a hurry, constantly overwhelmed with the events of their week. When you are around them, it is hard to take a breath. There is little rest and unceasing anxiety over the multiple details of their week. It is not necessarily that they are unbelievers. Many are followers of Christ, and yet peace is elusive to them.
Standing apart from them are others who have great peace. Regardless of the busyness of their lives, there is a quiet joy; a happiness; a rest that is a stark contrast to most of the world.
What is the difference?
“Those who love Your law have great peace.” It is as simple as that. For multiple reasons, some have come to see the foundational value of hearing from God every day. This established value drives them to take the time to listen through the prayerful reading of the Bible. As they do, God’s truth stabilizes them as they see all of life from God’s perspective. Hearing from God – even in the midst of the storm – brings a peace that is so contrary to others that it is instantly recognizable.
The psalmist was one of those peace-filled men who loved the Word of God and the peace and deliverance that it brought so much that he pursued it relentlessly. Look at the testimony of his desire:
“I opened my mouth wide and panted, for I longed for Your commandments” (Psa. 119:131).
“Your word is very pure, therefore Your servant loves it” (v. 140).
“…Your commandments are my delight” (v. 143).
“I rise before dawn and cry for help. I wait for Your words. My eyes anticipate the night watches that I may meditate on Your word” (vv. 147-148).
“…My heart stands in awe of Your words. I rejoice at Your word as one who finds great spoil…I love Your law” (vv. 161-163).
Thousands of times, I have drifted into anxiety. Anxious thoughts swarm my mind like fire ants, stripping me of sleep. God’s peace is waiting for me, in my den with a small light on, reading God’s Word. He is waiting for me there, so often in the night watches, to bring me back to center. To calm my heart. To restore my peace.
Oh, how I love His Word and the peace it brings!
Father, let me not stray far. Let anxiety be like a loud alarm, waking me up to You. Help me value Your Word so much that I run to You; that I love the night watches; that sleep becomes immaterial to me, so that I may hear from the only One who can calm my soul!
– Used by permission. Bill Elliff is the Founding & National Engage Pastor of Summit Church in North Little Rock, Arkansas.