How to Let the Peace of God Rule in Your Heart
I have spoken at length about peace and how we, as believers, have peace as our possession. We have also talked about our enemy, that longs to steal our peace so that we no longer experience it in our day to day living. God has made peace with us through the death of His Son on the cross, and now we live in a life-giving relationship with Him. We experience peace in our minds, but God also instructs us to live in peace with our fellow man and to allow peace, not strife, to rule in our relationships.
I have found peace to be a good temperature gauge in my life. If I find an area of my life where I do not have peace, I work and pray to ensure that peace becomes the rule in that aspect of my life. For me, this is living out Col 3:15
And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
When I make decisions, I find it best to have peace about my decisions or continue seeking guidance from the Lord. If I do not have peace about a certain action, I do not proceed. If I am in conversation and the peaceful atmosphere is suddenly lost, I become quiet and watchful about what is happening around me. If peace is not associated with a relationship, I will work to re-instate that sense of peace in that relationship.
God is a God of Peace, and consequently, the presence of peace in my life indicates that I am in harmony with His ways. (Phil 4:9)
We might say that peace is like an “internal confirmation” that God approves of a situation, decision, direction, relationship we have made. Thus, God leads us by the governance of His peace in our life.
According to the Strong’s Word dictionary, the word “rule” in Eph 3:15 is the Greek word “brabaeu”, which means to “act like an umpire.” If you have ever watched a cricket match, the umpire has the last say. An umpire directs, rules and arbitrates what is to happen in a situation. Peace acting as our umpire will tell us what “good” is and “not good.”
It is the final say as the umpire for the peaceful governance of our lives.
The umpire of Peace is an inner harmony of mind and soul that directs our lives, helping us to settle matters that rise up in our minds, relationships and decisions we have to make in life.
As we learn to pay attention to this rule of peace in our lives, we develop a sense of “right” and “wrong” action and resist situations where our inner conscience or authority of peace is not absolute. Thus, God helps us by giving us a sense of peace from our conscience to know whether we are on track or need to pay attention to something.
This internal umpire of peace helps me in so many areas of my life.
- A lack of peace acts as a warning when an action or situation is not safe for me, and I need to get out. A sense of unrest or unease captures me and brings me to correct action. Often I need to go back and make a few adjustments so that peace rules again.
- A loss of peace is a conviction: when I have done something wrong, a loss of peace has made me stop and examine my life, reflect on my behaviour and identify where I have made a mistake. When I agree with God about my behaviour and then repent (turn away from) my behaviour, peace rules again.
- Acts as an Alert: In relationships, when I don’t have peace about a relationship, it is often an indicator that I need to spend time, have a conversation, confront an issue or correct action with someone. This lack of peace has helped me when I may have unknowingly offended a person. It has also warned me of behaviour that I need to talk about in my children or marriage, almost a discernment given me that all is not well in that relationship.
- Peace is a confirmation: When I am in a decision-making situation, a lack of peace indicates that prayer and active investigation are necessary. On the other hand, when I come to the right decision, the rule of peace confirms that I have found the right direction.
- A stop and wait indication, sometimes I know what needs to be done, and I am ready to take action, but I have no peace about the timing of said action yet. The lack of peace is a red flag to delay, rather than a green flag to go ahead in the Lord’s power. This lack of peace associated with action has helped me wait for the Lord’s timing in life situations.
- When life is falling apart all around me, a feeling of real and present peace in my heart and mind has encouraged me that the Lord is present with me. The presence of peace has given me confidence and hope in what may be desperate circumstances, but His supernatural peace, which is beyond understanding, rules in my heart. This peace ignites hope and faith in me.
Here is the Amplified version of Col 3:15
“And let the peace (soul harmony which comes) from Christ rule (act as umpire continually) in your hearts [deciding and settling with finality all questions that arise in your minds, in that peaceful state]…”
According to the Bible, we are to seek peace and pursue it eagerly (1 Peter 3:11; Psalm 34:14). In other words, it should be our highest priority in any circumstance.
Jesus sets the example by living in perfect peace. We see evidence of this when Jesus was on the boat in the midst of the storm. The disciples were fearful and upset, but Jesus was in perfect peace, asleep on a pillow. Imagine having a peace rule in you internally that allows you to sleep peacefully in the storms of life. Jesus had that! When they woke Him up, He simply walked out on the deck and said, “Peace, be still.” He spoke to the winds and the waves, and they obeyed Him because He was speaking from a place of peace and had the authority to speak peace into a situation.
We, too, can have the rule of peace in our lives with the help of the Holy Spirit as we pursue peace and allow peace to be the umpire of our lives. So, today and every day, pursue peace. Let it settle the questions in your mind, only being led forward with the peace of God!
“You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace.” (Isaiah 55:12, NIV)
- Use peace as a temperature gauge of areas of your life that need to be addressed. Break your life up into different areas, like family, work, finances, church, social etc. and rate your level of peace in each area. Try to identify what in that area of your life does not give you peace.
- Consider the relationships in your life, starting with those closest to you and then moving out. Where do you have a sense of peace, and where does the lack of peace draw your attention.
- Can you think of a decision you took that did not have the accompanying peace with it? What was the result? Do you think the presence or non-presence of peace could help you not make poor decisions?
Lord, thank you that Your peace is not just a quietness of atmosphere, but a stillness of the soul in a world of chaos and disorder. Your peace is the umpire and guide to how I walk my life with the Spirit’s help. Help me be still before You and look to that peace that is to rule in my life. Help me co-operate with the Holy Spirit to establish the rule of peace in my life. Thank you for the peace that is mine as a child of God.