"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful." Colossians 3:15

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. (Colossians 3:15)

GOD’S PEACE COVERS ALL

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace – and be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. (Colossians 3:15-16 )

When my youngest child was a baby, I suffered from postpartum depression and panic attacks. I had been an overachiever and perfectionist, and when I couldn’t nurse (and Jordan had colic for six months), I assumed I was a bad mother. Hadn’t I gone to classes and read every parenting book possible? I’d followed all the guidelines about what to put on my registry and how to organize the nursery. I even went to childbirth and breastfeeding classes.

FEELING HOPELESS AND HELPLESS 

None of those things prepared me for a baby who wouldn’t sleep and a body that didn’t cooperate. With postpartum hormones raging and my coping mechanisms failing, I felt hopeless and helpless.

I am so thankful my husband was understanding, encouraging me to visit my doctor and begin medication and counseling. Slowly, I began the hard work of unraveling lies I had believed for too long – that I had to be perfect for God to love me, that He disapproved of my mothering, and that He couldn’t love me in my desperate state (to name just a few of the lies).

GOD’S PEACE THROUGH SCRIPTURE

Medicine helped me climb out of the deep emotional hole I had been stuck in, and counseling gave me the tools to move forward in a healthy way — but the most healing aspect of my journey to peace of mind was God’s eternal, living, and active Word.

At my counselor’s suggestion, I printed out verses on index cards. Then I taped them on my car’s dashboard, above the changing table, and by my kitchen sink. Whenever I changed Jordan, drove him around to get him to nap, or washed out his bottles, I read a verse and clung to its truth.

Slowly, God’s promises and grace penetrated and replaced the lies I had believed.

Recently (in 2020), faced with a pandemic, a dying pet, Jordan moving out of the house, and a devastating job loss, I once again turned to the Scriptures to fight my old nemesis: anxiety. Anxiety might have tried to make itself at home again, but I didn’t let it. When I couldn’t find the words to pray or read (even in the Psalms, my go-to book of the Bible when I’m struggling), I listened to worship music and sang along.

GOD’S PEACE, OUR UMPIRE

As I read Colossians 3:15-16 to prepare for this post, I was stunned to find out the Greek in verse 15 means let peace be the umpire of your minds. What a great word picture!

I can see an aging, chubby ump (clad in black and white stripes) on the job behind home plate. In the batter’s box, Lies (like “God is disappointed in me right now.”) swings a bat over home plate. The umpire shakes his head, jerks his right hand over his head, and shouts, “You’re OUTTA HERE!” – and since I have an active imagination, I also see Lies slinking back to the dugout in disappointment. He wanted to get a home run but instead struck out.

Who is the umpire in your mind? Is it the world, friends, culture, or social media? Who decides what goes in and what stays out? If we’re believers, we have the Holy Spirit to help us in this task.

GOD’S PEACE PASSES UNDERSTANDING

As you ponder Colossians 3:15-16 for yourself, ask God to show you any erroneous thoughts you’ve allowed to take root. Then, ask Him to help you replace those lies with His truth. Journal a prayer of confession and gratitude to Him. You might even look up a worship song that speaks to your heart and sing it aloud to Him, praising God, who gave His Son (the Word made flesh) to set us free.

I’m thankful for the God whose peace passes understanding. I’m also thankful He keeps us supernaturally wrapped in that peace when we focus our eyes and hearts on Him.

Questions For Reflection

  1. Who is the umpire in your mind? Is it the world, friends, culture, or social media? Who decides what goes in and what stays out?
  2. Which Scripture passages are your go-to verses when things are difficult? Write the verses out on cards, and place those cards where you will see them often this week.
  3. What are the lies you’ve been believing? Write them down. Then, release them to God in prayer.
Dena Dyer

Dena Dyer

Author

Dena loves Jesus, her family, all things literary, coffee, and British television. She’s the author of eleven books and many articles, a professional speaker, and a Bible teacher who has been married to her hubby Carey for 25 wonderful years (and a couple they don’t discuss). Her passion is sharing words of humor and hope with wounded and weary people. Dena enjoys singing on the praise team at the church where her husband is the worship pastor. She spends too much time online or in the fast food drive-through – but she and the Lord are working on it. Connect with her via her website, Instagram, or Facebook.

Promise of Abundant Peace

God’s peace is altogether different from the peace of the world because God’s peace is not a gift; it’s a person: God’s own Son, Jesus, the Prince of Peace. God’s peace is abundant, unspeakable, generous, plentiful, extravagant, lavish, expansive, affectionate, and never-ending.

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