A Storm is ComingA storm has come to a dear friend of mine and his family. He has been diagnosed with cancer – one of the most challenging and threatening storms a person can face. The peace he has in the midst of his storm is noticeable and encouraging. It is the mark of someone who trusts in his God.

There are other storms, and most in the body of Christ have faced them. There are personal storms, storms that affect families, and storms that impact an entire fellowship community. The way we live through these storms says much about our faith – the depth of our trust in God.

The next storm you face may be personal, familial or broader in its impact. Your trust in God will be evidenced by the peace you experience, and the peace others see in you. Inexplicable peace will be one of the strongest characteristics in those whose houses are standing in the storm. It will draw others to Him.

With that in mind, I would like to share the promise, provision and way of peace for every child of God. It starts with the prophecy of His coming.

But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
Isaiah 53:5

This much quoted verse contains something I had not noticed until recently. Not only was the Messiah to be wounded, bruised and scourged, but he was also promised to be chastised for our peace. He took on our chastisement (correction, reproof, rebuke) of the Father; that we might have peace with Him.

The LORD God is faithful and trustworthy. He is almighty – able to do all that He says. He keeps His promises. That includes the provision of His peace.

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:1-2

For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.  And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.  For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father. Ephesians 2:14-18

For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. Colossians 1:19-20

By this time, I suspect at least a few readers are thinking that our “peace with God” is a different peace than the peace we need for the coming storm. While I agree they may be technically different, I strongly suggest that they cannot be separated. The peace we have with God is the provision for our peace in the storm. Maintaining this connection in your heart and mind will bring revelation and power to the peace of God, in the midst of a storm.

God has made Jesus Christ our peace. He has suffered the chastisement of His Father that we might find, in faith, the peace of God. He has also made a way for His children to lay hold of all that which He has laid hold of us. He has given us a way to find and live in peace.

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:4-7

During a particularly stressful time in my life (a time that included daily panic attacks), the Holy Spirit introduced me to this passage, and trained me in its use as a recipe for peace and a weapon against the enemy. What Satan intended for evil, God turned to my good.

Here is a general version of the resulting prayer.

Father in Heaven, I rejoice in Your presence. I rejoice in the promise of Your protection and peace in this circumstance! I surrender to the expression of Your gentleness to everyone involved – even those that appear to be my enemies. I know You are with me in every trial and tribulation. By Your grace, I refuse to be anxious. Thank You for this opportunity to experience and prove Your love. I pray for Your protection and guidance in this situation. I will not be able to persevere without You. I desperately need You. I receive Your peace and I rest in Your protection, through Your Son; in whose name I pray. Amen.

In closing, let me encourage you to be as specific as you can in your prayer. Pray with the mind of Christ – full of faith and humility. The peace of God will bear witness of His trustworthiness to those in your spheres of influence. They will be encouraged and comforted in your peace. They will be drawn to Him.

Humbly yours and forever His,