(Day 4 of our 8-day study, The Struggle, on the Armor of God)
“Good morning. Can you talk?”
My phone lit up, revealing the message from a dear, childhood friend.
Thinking it would be a quick conversation, I pressed “dial” and set my phone on speakerphone, as I finished applying eyeliner to my exhausted eyes.
“I have cancer.”
The three words hit me in the chest, knocking air from my lungs and rendering me speechless.
“I... I… don’t know what to say,” I choked.
After exchanging more words— dumbfounded mumbles from me, and information from her—my friend stated calmly,
“I’m going to be okay.”
I admired her.
I admired her peace in great uncertainty.
A cancer scare two years ago (that ended up false) was enough to unwind me, fraying my faith and sending me reeling in fear.
But here was my friend, diagnosed, and yet peaceful as a summer evening stroll.
Friend, it’s easy to be anxious. But how do we maintain peace when life hurls a shocking loss, unexpected hurdle, or even a grim diagnosis our way?
Ephesians 6:15 tells us, “For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.”
What is this “Good News?”
The Gospel, His Word.
The message that reminds us that Jesus has already conquered sin, sickness and death, winning victory on our behalf (2 Timothy 1:10, 1 Corinthians 15:57).
The truth that tells us that He has gone to prepare an eternal home for us in Heaven (2 Corinthians 5:1-2).
And the reality that “from Him and through Him and for Him are all things” (Romans 11:36), for He holds the world in His very hands (Psalm 95:4).
Jesus summed up this kind of peace in John 14:27, saying, “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
Paul urges us to put on the shoes of peace so that we will be “fully prepared” for the challenges that Jesus himself warned about He said, “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
Yes, the truth is that we live in a fallen world, full of broken people.
The sickness won’t always go away.
The marriage won’t always be saved.
The child won’t always come home.
But we can walk in peace in the midst of these storms by standing firm on God’s Word.
Knowing He has already won the victory.
Understanding that this world is not our home.
Trusting that He holds our lives in the palm of His hand.
Friends, we don’t have to retreat in fear. In the battle against our enemy, we can advance, donned in the assurance of the shoes of peace. Just as a soldier’s sandals protected him from the rocky terrain of battle, so will peace cushion us from the blows of life.
Today, let’s choose peace by heeding the words found in Philippians 4:6-7:
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. ”
When we are prepared with the Gospel, we can walk peacefully through any situation of life.
“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” Isaiah 26:3
1.) Are you experiencing anxiety about an situation, conflict or diagnosis in your life? Identify any area(s) where you’ve been retreating in fear, instead of advancing in faith.
2.) Look up several verses about peace, courage, and God’s faithfulness and post them around your house where you’ll see them often.
Father, Thank you that you are trustworthy and faithful, and that you have already won the victory on my behalf. Help me to combat fear and anxiety with the truth of your Gospel of peace. Thank you that you hold my life in your hands. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.