Peace be unto you.
I can think of no greater blessing year-round to give another. It is my wish for you.
Consider the moment of those words: The tomb was empty, our Risen Christ is before his disciples, Jesus says “… Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.” (The Bible, John 20:21, King James Version)
He spoke these words when they must have been perplexed, stunned, likely frightened, suffering from grief and lack of understanding. When you have these same and similar thoughts and feelings, He speaks the same words to you. He doesn’t want you filled with anxiety, running around desperately as if your circumstances depend on your figuring out how to manipulate life to get what you want, plagued with questions of “Why this…why not this…” in your life. Most of you behave no different than the rest of the world without God – thinking the important matters of life are up to you to shape using your mind – thus you often feel anything but peaceful.
Jesus had peace, thus he could give it…you must first have something, obviously, before you can give it. He was free. Only in freedom do we experience peace, yet many who say they have this spiritual freedom do not feel at peace in their personal lives. To the degree you cease trusting God to bring blessings into your life and instead begin trusting your own mind to bring things into your life you will make life much worse. This happens whenever you say no to true freedom, which is trust in God, because you can’t see how it will all work out unless you intervene.
Meditation upon our Lord’s Passion can bring an awareness of His love, ever-present, despite the world around us. But this wisdom of the message escapes most since they mistakenly believe themselves incapable of being the channel God would have them be of peace.
Stop Trying to MAKE Relationships or anything else important happen
I see most of my fellow believers in Christ grasping but a small piece of the message. Rather than trusting God for all they desire and need, they behave no differently than non-believers as they desperately seek in others the answers to voids they perceive in their life.
Examples are numerous. Due to lack of faith, lack of trusting God, some decide to try and make important relationships happen, rationalizing that they are merely making opportunities, but it is not who they are and it is not what they should be doing and they know inside themselves it is not how God would have them proceed – for their actions are coming from fear – fear that they will not have something or someone in life unless they compromise their trust in God and instead do it themselves.
Many behave this way in regards to even the most personal matter of meeting their mate or life partner (as in going out there to meet another in hopes of finding the right one through dating services, blind dates, attending social functions one would otherwise not attend, etc.). How faithless one must be to advertise themselves as if they are merchandise in hopes of attracting another to them. This is the surest way to meet the wrong one.
Such activity is not exemplifying the peace of Christ. Worrying about imagined scenarios financially, professionally, and personally…the list goes on, is not of God. Some join groups of people one does not appreciate for perceived benefits to one’s career/reputation/etc. Going against your very nature of trusting God to provide to obtain anything in life is the incorrect way – it strays you from the path God has for you.
The Holy Spirit Knows Your Desires
Don’t you realize that the Holy Spirit already knows of your heart’s desires and needs? To use your mind to try and make relationships with other people happen is saying to God that you know better when, how and who should be in your life. It means you are not trusting the Holy Spirit to provide for you that which is perfect – at the perfect time – and in the perfect way. Once you start trying to make things happen, you lose the ability to even see what He has for, you lose the ability to be grateful for the gifts He has given you, and I believe you can even close (or severely delay) the beautiful blessings God wants to give you. And for what? A lot of pain. God’s plan for you is perfect happiness, but you can get in the way of it if you cease trusting Him.
Trying to make things happen on your terms, in your limited perception, will not bring you the end you desire, and the means employed will trouble you; you will feel the warning. You can choose to trust the Holy Spirit in all things or you can use your free will to try to do it on your own. Behaving as if some matters are just too big for God alone will ultimately bring heartache and deeper despair. Do you really think God doesn’t know what is good for you, do you really think He doesn’t know where you live, your activities and interests, your values and beliefs, and how to bring in anyone or anything that would be a blessing for you? Cease trying to MAKE things happen, and let God work in your life in His perfect plan. All things and all persons who would be a blessing for your life, be it from the professional contacts who would wish to assist you in your work to the one individual you could share your life with, manifest when you are as Paul advised walking “by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7, KJV)
True Freedom Is of The Spirit
I write this for those whose love of freedom is not merely pragmatic but predicated upon a spiritual awareness. Don’t you see that the gift of freedom you so well understand relative to politics, for example, is also applicable to your personal inner peace? You may speak of the peace and abundance freedom brings a people/society, but have you really let His gift of true freedom bring you the peace and abundance into your personal life?
Only in a few of those espousing love of freedom do I witness peace predominately in their countenance and demeanor. Only in those few do I see happiness and joyful enthusiasm as they share what they have learned about how freedom transforms situations to everyone’s benefit. Only a few have developed spiritually to the degree to recognize true freedom. They are the exceptions. In the libertarian/freedom movement I see many who express much anxiety, worry, and heightened tension over what they see happening in the world around them. For them, the world of man is it – the end all and be all…but to me it is essentially meaningless as it believes love is not possible, thus it looks to only to the human mind to solve problems political or personal – when the answer is spiritual. Those who are aware are the most passionate educators about political/societal freedom, but even they succumb to anxiety and worry in their personal lives when/if they stray from the spiritual path and begin to make decisions and change their behavior out of fear.
Think of all the crises the world harbors on day in and day out, arguments, affronts on liberty, people raging over what other people do and assuming a prerogative to force them to comply to their way of life or else…they use the force of government to make them. I see no love in such debate, only egos clashing. You see this, too, I bet.
Anxiety Means You Are Making a Mistake and Ignoring our Risen Christ’s Love
But, sadly and unfortunately, I often also see those who have accepted the atonement clashing their spirit against their own ego (false personality). Do you experience a sense of lack in your life despite your belief? If you feel anxious about anything, you have gotten of the path of truth and strayed from His freedom from such worries as others have.
The risen Christ’s love is not something to be set aside only for Lent, Easter, Christmas, or any other day of recognition, His love and the peace of the freedom given us is to be experienced day in day out.
To trust in Him means abandoning the common prideful behavior of most human beings to take control of their lives – to make things happen – to be a self-made man – to obtain that which you may sincerely desire through means of your mind alone sets you up to exacerbate the very feelings of lack, loneliness, discontent, frustration, despair you are trying to quash.
To believe in Christ means you have cast aside the doubt and arrogance your mind alone develops, and rather it means you have chosen to supplicate your life to our Lord. Yes, you may ponder and wonder, but if you ever choose to take it upon yourself to force and make important things occur on your timeframe, you will suffer even more.Don’t you accept what Jesus said, “your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.”? (Matthew 6:32, KJV) He continued, “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” (Matthew 6:34, KJV).
And, yet, you are going beyond simple wise provision and use of the resources given you, you are worrying about important matters as if your worry and listening to non-believer’s advice on how to attain your deepest longings – and each time you do so you will find only more strife, disappointment, and pain.
Abandon Contrived Activities and Behavior Inconsistent with Who You Are – Always Be You
The key to staying on the path of personal freedom and experiencing His peace is abandoning contrived actions and behavior (which contradict your inner knowing, personality, temperament, and values )of which you expect to receive some benefit. Transcend what society tells you is the way, for it appeals but to your false self, and choose God’s way by relinquishing the mental need to know and simply accept that if you are living as best you can in God’s will that all the things to desire will be given you at the right time. You must choose to live now, in the present moment, to fully experience freedom and its fruits of gratitude, mercy, and peace.
The happiness we can receive from Christ, the Christ consciousness, is to be experienced year-round. Release your perceived need to control your life and let the still small voice of the Holy Spirit guide you to perfect peace. Anything you do to the contrary will not bring you the peace you seek, but heartache.
Interestingly, the more developed intellectually you are (a good thing), the greater the temptation, however, to trust in your mind rather than God. This is why I think so many in the libertarian/freedom/anarchist thought find it difficult to express matters of faith – even if they privately possess a spiritual basis of their life. They fear what others may think of them, so they do not teach from their heart, but only their mind.
Jesus taught. He did not force his teaching upon anyone, he simply shared.
So should we teach. This means not withholding part of our belief in God in our teaching of others. Your holiness, and interestingly enough, your spiritual development and understanding, is enhanced as you teach it which means being who you truly are at all times – not hiding it or reserving it to share only with others who already believe as you do. Believing in the risen Son of God means believing love is possible in a world which strives to make you doubt it. It means realizing this love is the answer to every problem in life – every perplexity in your life. As you do this, you will become a shining light reaching the hearts of others who are also aware that there’s more to this life than meets the eye.
I encourage fellow believers in Christ and His message of love to become more comfortable and expressive in sharing right along with their practical knowledge. Our personal choice on what we belief spiritually and how it guides the way we live, including its basis in our understanding of what is righteous, moral and ethical, in the realm of politics and society as a whole, can be a powerfully important element in our teaching and helping of others in their life path.
You never know how simply sharing who you are may positively affect another. Never doubt the power of you simply being and sharing who you are. People will naturally want to know more about where your understanding and devotion to freedom emanates, where your happiness emanates, and may either inquire or simply pay close attention to that which you write, say and do. You don’t force what you believe into any conversation, you just are willing to share it when pertinent to whatever is being discussed. We’re advised in Matthew 5:16, KJV, to “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
Remember, the mind is but a tool to implement the values we placed in our heart. It should not take over your actions; it cannot be trusted. It is a tool but the heart is through which our Heavenly Father’s love is present to guide our mind. To worry about one’s personal and professional life, to disturb the peace God gave you, is to say no to his gift of freedom – freedom from the worry and strife man without God suffers from. Remember, he said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14:27) To be aware of what occurs in the world around us is wise, but to ever think for one moment that our well-being is dependent on what man without God devises and suggests is to lose oneself in utter worry – a state God would never have you be.
“Peace is the serenity of the soul, the tranquillity of the mind, the simplicity of the heart, the bond of love, and the union of charity.” – St. Austin (from The Manual of The Holy Catholic Church – Embracing Light from the Altar, James J. McGovern, D.D. (Copr. 1906 by James J. McGovern, Copr. 1920 by Joseph R. Gay) This is the peace He gives us and it is the peace we can share with others by being ourselves at all times, by not allowing anxiety to make us be something we are not.
I have no concern for what tomorrow will bring, I live in the present moment, with gratitude that my life is guided, if I listen, by God’s loving hand in all I do. I listen, learn, and focus on living life to the fullest, hindered not by worries many engage and suffer in. I feel the abilities I have to share the beauty of freedom as the answer to man’s crises and perplexities on how to relate to one another in society stem from my acceptance of the greatest gift of freedom, of love, of peace given from God. Love is of God, and freedom is of love. Choosing to embrace freedom, to live it, teach it, and respect the freedom of every other, has brought a peace in my life beyond compare. Unlike many others, my peace is not disturbed by what happens out there, but remains constant and perfectly unaffected despite the crises, personal and political, others fret over. In this state of being, I can be both a teacher to and learner from every other individual God has me encounter.
Accept and claim the freedom He gave you, freedom from all anxiety, be who you are – not what you think others expect you to be, at all times…change not who you are to obtain something which you know you can and must trust God to provide. Whenever you feel a lack of that peace, you have mistakenly strayed from the path of faith and you will likely take wrong actions leading to greater strife.
Freedom is the Key to Life’s Short Journey a piece by Jacob Hornberger I highly recommend
Finally, I direct you to a beautiful piece entitled “Freedom is the Key to Life’s Short Journey,” a piece written by Jacob Hornberger in 1999…when I first read it years ago, I felt such a rapport with it – for it expresses precisely the thoughts, pondering, and beliefs I hold. I have shared its link on my blog on past Easter’s as well, as I shall do again now- I highly recommend it to you: Freedom is the Key to Life’s Short Journey.
In solitude, in silence, ponder these things, so that you may experience true freedom in life to enter and remain in the “…the peace of God, which passeth all understanding.” (Phil. 4:7, KJV)
Peace be unto you.