I’m pretty sure I’ve never felt our world groan more than I do than in this hour.
When you pause, you feel the atmospheric pressure. I don’t need to list the cracks in our culture and where we experience the weariness of humanity. There’s a heaviness on the earth that tells us something needs to break. Systems; the created order; morality; our own fragile frames; even religion all grind with disturbance. You don’t have to be a believer to feel the tyranny of compounding darkness and hopelessness. It weighs on the soul like a wet, wool blanket.
“There are many who say, ‘Who will show us any good?'” (Psalm 4:6)
As I walk through my community, I hear a low hum of desire for “good” that’s become smothered with disbelief and despair. In some it feels like the hope for “good” has been completely extinguished. “Whatever ‘good’ we hope for is only a mirage. It won’t be enough to fill the ache, the chasm, the vacuum inside.”
And so we groan.
Our communities, our nation, and the planet is “troubled”.
I’m intentionally using this word because “trouble” is doing what our righteous God designed it to do. It’s causing human hearts to groan. And, because we’ve been entrusted with the stewardship of creation, it also causes everything around us to groan.
What are we groaning for?
Peace. True peace. Not as the world gives. Not as the world has been giving us. Nor the kind of peace we’ve been demanding the world give us. We crave a substantive peace. A sense of order. A sense of immovable truth. A sense of love and being loved. A sense of understandable purpose and meaning.
Again. You don’t have to be a Christian to feel this. You just need to have a heartbeat. And if we listen deeply to the hearts beating around us… that’s… the… groan… we… hear.
We’re groaning for a tangible peace that won’t be exposed as fraudulent or insufficient. All 7.5 billion of us.
There’s only One Source for that kind of peace.
“He Himself is our peace.” (Ephesians 2:14)
But it’s His will that there be many many (billions) of witnesses to that peace.
“Blessed are the peace-bringers…” (Matthew 5:9)
Who are they?
“They’re called the sons of God.” (Matthew 5:9)
The ones “all creation groans” for.
In this hour of mounting trouble, the Spirit is raising up daughters and sons of God who will give themselves to “Letting the peace of Christ rule in (their) hearts.” (Colossians 1:15) and know how to help bring Him and His peace to groaning hearts.
“Letting the peace of Christ rule in our hearts” is job one. (And as a prayer-guy, I can say, this will only be found in corporate prayer… where day-by-day we give the Spirit access to the conversations that are brewing in our hearts.) As we learn to let the peace of Jesus reign within us, the Holy Spirit will equip with the power to do job two: to speak words of eternal assurance; healing; reconciliation; life; destiny and glory under the perfect reign of the Prince of all peace.
“27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 28 You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’” (John 14:27-28)
I’m groaning for His peace to be manifest within me, and my world.
JSB • August 19, 2022