Finding Peace: Headlines, Bagels and God's Provision
This morning, I woke up and read the news that popped up on my social media accounts as I generally do every morning.
Coffee in hand, I usually read the latest headlines as my kiddo munches on her Cinnamon Toast Crunch.
It's a modern picture of the morning routine in the 50s - get a cup of joe and peruse the newspaper. Mine just happen to be on my phone, but every now and again, a real newspaper has to make its way to my table.
There's just something about the feeling of a newspaper in your fingers, the scent of the paper and the rattling noise it makes when you turn the page.
This morning, I read about the vote on the UK leaving the European Union.
My kiddo, blissfully unaware of the state of the pound or the global economy, effortlessly destroyed a blueberry bagel.
These days the headlines get more and more dire, and I look at the vibrant fire in her eyes, wondering, "What did I get you into?"
The plagues and horrors that inhabit this earth today will be there waiting for her generation, and it makes me scared for their future at times.
Fear gripped me this morning as I contemplated what impact these current headlines would have in the next few weeks, months and even years.
What will we leave our children, after the dust of chaos falls?
It was then that God reminded me softly of the peace that Jesus left us.
In John 14:27, Christ said "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid."
He knew troubles would befall us. As a matter of fact, he guaranteed it. But rather than leaving us to the wild and wandering fears that haunt us, he instead guided us to his own peace that he left behind.
The peace of Christ is available not only for us, but our children and all the generations to come. Christ died with us all in mind, seeing everyone from his day right up until the end of the world as we know it.
No sin was hidden, no deed left uncovered and nothing was ever left unknown to our Heavenly Father. Christ knew exactly what would come, and left us the mercy and grace of his love and peace to provide us rest as we travel through it.
Unhelpful fear and dread is what Satan wants us to feel. He wants us to see the world crumbling around us and be filled with unbridled terror.
We must not give in to it, but instead, lean on the Lord.
Paul, writer of many books of the Bible, was imprisoned due to his work in the Kingdom. In the midst of his circumstances, he could've despaired - but instead, he clung to Jesus and even continued his ministries in his captivity through his letters. Who would've thought so many years later, Paul's letters would be providing instruction, encouragement and direction to followers of Christ?
In Philippians 4:11-13, Paul discusses how he faced these earthly challenges and found the ability to focus on the will of God: "Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me."
The Bible is the Living Word of God - the verses contained within were put there on purpose, to help us during times of hardship, to help us grow in Christ and to grow closer to the Lord.
It's a part of that peace that Christ left us as we find rest in the comfort of God's word.
In this, I can rest easy knowing my child and the following generations can be and have been given so much to help handle and manage the trials that lay ahead.
With God in the midst, the Word in our hearts and the Gospel of Christ on our lips, we will raise our children up knowing the right ways to go.
While these events might take us by surprise, we've got to remember that God knows all things. He made ample provision for us in his grace and mercy.
Even amid the turbulence, dear friends - don't despair. Christ knew of these troubles, and laid our paths accordingly - including that of our children.