The best possible peace...
"... the waves broke over the boat ... Jesus was in the stern, sleeping ..." (vv.37-38)
We continue examining the essential differences between supernatural peace and certain other states of mind. Peace is not withdrawal. At recurring intervals in the life of the Christian Church, various forms of withdrawal have been practiced with a view to discovering inner peace. Early Methodism was almost wrecked by a form of it known as "stillness." The idea was to withdraw from all activity and remain "still" before the Lord. This kind of "stillness" is not to be confused with the supernatural peace which the Spirit brings to the hearts of God's people. "Stillness" is something achieved; peace is something given.
Someone has said: "He only is advancing in life whose heart is getting softer, whose blood warmer, whose brain quicker, whose spirit is entering into living peace." Note the words: "whose spirit is entering into living peace." Peace, to be peace, must be a living peace -- not a dead peace of retreat out of responsibility, or an encasement into insensibility. Supernatural peace is, like joy -- entirely independent of circumstances. This truth is brought out most clearly in today's passage. As the wind whips up the waves, the Son of God remains asleep in the stern of the boat. Why the emphasis on the "stern"? I am told that this is the worst place to be when a boat is being tossed about by a storm. Yet in the worst possible place, Jesus enjoyed the best possible peace -- sleep. The peace of God does not require a mold of easy circumstances in which to operate. Nothing can push it under and nothing can push it over.
O Master, how I long for the same inner calmness and tranquility that pervaded Your life when You were here on earth. But I know the secret -- I must let You live Your life more fully in me. Help me to do that -- today and every day. Amen.
For Further Study
1. What did Jesus say about His peace?
2. Where must our peace be established?