The life of man, if left to his own devices, is like the seething waves of the sea, forever beating against the rocks, finding no rest for his soul. Like the restless tongue described in James, he is set on fire by hell, burning with passions, lusts and dreams not given by God. These provide an impetus to search in all the wrong places for the peace he longs for more than anything in the world, but can never seem to secure as his own. In fact, everything he sets his gaze upon to pursue in hope of finding this peace, only stings in the end, with the poison of sin that drags him deeper into his pit of misery.
How wonderful that we are not left to our own devices. If we are, it is because of our own stubborn rebellion. God made a way through His Son Jesus. Instead of gazing on the things spawned from hell all around us, we are told in His word that we can gaze on Jesus. In the same way the Israelites looked on the serpent in the wilderness and were made well, so we can gaze upon Jesus and find healing for the innermost hurts in our souls.
Peace In The Prince Of Peace
Not only that, but we can also find in Him the peace we have searched everywhere else to find, but failed. He is the Prince of Peace and those who make Him prince in their lives receive a portion of that peace. How big that portion is, is up to us.
Isaiah 26:3-4 (3) You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. (4) Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock. – ESV
It becomes obvious as we mature in our spiritual walk, that anything that shakes and is unsteady is not from God’s kingdom. The shaking might come from God, but what is being shaken is not, because His kingdom cannot be shaken. Though we have given our lives to the Prince of Peace, we only get as much of that peace as we have given it access to in our lives.
Are our minds stayed on Him or do they flit about occasionally in vain pursuit of some temporal pleasure? As surely as we allow our minds to wander from the things sanctioned by God, we walk away from the peace He can give us.
It Boils Down To Trust
It is ultimately a trust issue as laid out in the verse above. If our minds are stayed on Him, it is because we trust Him. Perhaps we can extrapolate from this and assume that that’s true for whatever our minds are fixed on. If our minds are stayed on carnal things perhaps it is because we have set a measure of hope in them. But these things cannot and will not deliver what they promise.
As we grow spiritually, these truths become ingrained in us deeper and deeper. Despite the many times our flesh has let us down throughout our lives, we still want to believe it instinctively because it demands no sacrifice. But if we mortify the flesh day by day, and fix our eyes more steadily on Him, we reap His peace in greater measures and become more firmly anchored in Him. It is a process, but one that is sure to pay a great return. An eternal one, from one glory to a greater. And though sin returns carnal pleasures immediately, He provides for us heavenly pleasures that will never fade or go away.