May 2019 Article

Dear Friends,

I write during Easter Week, and have been reflecting on the “rest of the story” that we see in John 20:19-22. It's Easter evening. The disciples are locked in the upper room, fearful of the fate that may befall them. In the midst of their fear, the risen Jesus appears, speaking peace to them (vs 19).  After seeing Jesus’ hands and side, the disciples are now rejoicing! What’s interesting here is that Jesus again speaks peace to them! (vs 21) Then He says, “As the father has sent me, so I send you”, and imparts the Holy Spirit to them. (vs 22)

How does all this play out in a practical way? How does it apply to you and me as witnesses of our risen Lord? Let me share a few thoughts.  First, I’m reminded that being a witness for Christ can be fearful at times. We may be rejected, made fun of, not well received. We may even lose friends who aren’t willing to go on with us in Christ. Then there are those times of great joy, such as leading someone to Christ or helping a believer grow in grace. In the midst of all these emotional changes, the peace of Christ in our own soul is the foundation of our ministry. 

This peace is essential if we are to stay focused on our mission. We are sent into our world to share the gospel. The varying emotions we deal with can distract us, even detract from, our sense of purpose. The peace of Christ keeps us stable.

This is turn is why we need the Holy Spirit. The good news is that the same Holy Spirit who was given to the apostles on Easter evening was given to all believers on the day of Pentecost! It is He who works this peace in us.

Dear friend, may you know the peace of God in Christ by His Spirit now and always.

For Jesus,