Peace is Not
Do you know what those mean? Chances are you do because we are so curious about ourselves, what makes us tick, our strengths and weaknesses, and the why behind the who. We have become obsessed with the search for self and are desperate to fit into neat, cookie cutter boxes so we do not feel so alone and unsure. I know all of the above personality classifications for myself because I took tests and assessments and felt so understood and known when the descriptions could have just been labeled “Becca”. These classifications and analyses gave me such a great peace and I knew where to go and what to do from that point forward in life.
Peace is not knowing everything about ourselves. Peace is not figuring “it” out. Peace is not attaching tidy labels to ourselves as evidence to our being and decision making process. Peace is not being able to justify or quantify our actions or behaviors. Peace is knowing who God is and fully relying on Him for everything.
Peace is not only knowing more about ourselves, but peace is knowing who God is. How can you love what you do not know? How can you serve what you do not understand? How can you reflect what you have not seen? Growing in the knowledge of who God is and His promises for you increases your faith and strengthens your trust. In Isaiah 26:3 we read, “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” The more fully we understand God, the more fully we understand ourselves. We have peace with who we are because God created us. He speaks truth over us and reminds us that our story isn’t our own, but we are part of His story of redemption. When we trust God to make straight our paths (Proverbs 3:5-6), then we can rest in His leading and His provision along the way.
Peace is not taking control of our own lives, but peace is fully relying on God for everything. There is very little we feel like we can control in this world. The reality is that there is even less in our control than we realize. We cannot control being laid off from our jobs, contracting a terminal illness, or protecting our children from harm, but we can control our decision to trust God and our responses to the circumstances we encounter. This can leave us feeling very helpless, but Jesus tells us, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27) Peace comes from our Heavenly Father and not from learning all the things and making all the right choices so that everything in our lives will go exactly, perfectly right. Have you ever had things go exactly, perfectly right? Me neither! So how can we seek peace in our circumstances when there are no guarantees? We can’t! There is only peace in the knowledge of our good, good Father and relying on Him for everything. When we rely on God then nothing and no one can shake us.
Now, learning about our personalities and strengths is not entirely wrong. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10) God created our bodies, our personalities, and our strengths and weaknesses in order that we might serve Him and build up His body. He has a purpose for each of our individual lives and He has gifted us accordingly. It is when we put more emphasis on our knowledge of self than our knowledge of God that we become misguided. We must remember to seek peace in our Creator and utilize our gifts to bring Him glory.
Peace is not found in our identity as woman, wife, or mother. Peace is not found in our Myers-Briggs, Enneagram, D.I.S.C, Smalley, Love Language, or Spiritual Gift assessments. Peace is found in our true identity as a child of God, created in His image that we may reflect His character to the world. Peace is not found in self, but rather in our Savior. Peace is not having certainty for the future, but rather having confidence in the One who holds the future in His capable hands.