Fruit of the Spirit: We Can’t Fake Real Peace
The kind of peace that followers of Jesus produce isn’t about cultivating an image or a happy feeling. Peace — real peace — is a promise from Jesus.
“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” (John 14:27).
When we decide to follow Christ and trust in him for salvation, we have peace with God (Rom. 5:1). We no longer need to worry about what happens to us after this life is over because the Lord declares us righteous and in right standing with him. We also get peace from God. Anxiety and worry can’t master us. We have freedom from fear because we have hope and a future in Christ.
It’s easy to keep our focus on these kinds of peace. Peace with God is the whole point of salvation, and peace from God is transformative. It’s possible that Paul was talking about these things when he lists the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. Likely, though, he was also pointing out the kind of peace he mentions over and over again in his letters (Rom. 12:18, 1 Cor. 7:15, 2 Cor. 13:11, Eph. 4:3, Col. 3:15). That kind of peace is peace with others.
Living at peace with others does not come naturally. When we take a look at the world around us, it’s hard to find a peaceful common ground shared among people. But this is the transforming power of the gospel.
Where we used to find division and hate, we now find common ground — a place to agree in unity.
That place rests in Jesus. Peace among our brothers and sisters in Christ is the fruit that flows out of our lives, and it’s a marker of who we serve.
True peace doesn’t mean we’ll always agree on everything. True peace means we work hard to love each other the way Christ loves us, even when we disagree. We can’t fake that kind of peace, because it ultimately brings glory to God.
“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:5-6).
This week when you’re tempted to despair, worry, or give in to the urge to reject the unity we’re given in Christ, remember:
We have peace with God.
We have peace from God.
We are called to live in peace with others.
How have you experienced the peace of Jesus in your own life or in your relationship with someone else? Let us know!