At times, storms roll over our lives with bounding blows and devastate life. A question that many of us have is how do we maintain a sense of peace and spiritual balance when trials strike?
The answer is found in a close abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. And the words of Helen Lemmel’s hymn, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,” which contain a vital and exciting truth that an unshakable peace is available to all who turn the eyes of their hearts to Jesus in faith.
Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
O soul, are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see?
There’s light for a look at the Savior, and life more abundant and free!
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
look full in his wonderful face,
and the things of earth will
grow strangely dim
in the light of his glory and grace
Chances are when adversity strikes, one of the first things you do is to wonder why this is happening to you. The second thing may be to question what kind of impact it will have on your life, both now and in the future. Obviously, reactions such as these are normal, but there needs to be another response included and that response is to turn to the One who holds all comfort and security firmly within His grasp.
As we grow in our relationship to Christ, we discover that life is not always predictable. In fact, there are sorrows and tragedies built into the framework of our existence that we seldom anticipate. The principle that we learn is that if our peace and security rests only within ourselves or some other person we will face disappointment. The obvious truth is that when trials come there is a greater chance we will experience great disappointment that is beyond our ability to manage alone.
What we learn is that one of the first steps in dealing with anxiety is to recognize that it is the opposite of peace. Anxiety is the fan that flames the fires of doubt and confusion that troubles us to the point of unmanageable worry. In addition, anxiety has the ability to leave us helplessly bundled up in worry and fear, which paralyzes life. Consequently, when we cave in to thoughts of anxiety, we lose our spiritual focus and mindset. The key to overcoming anxiety is found only in the presence of God.
Paul admonishes us: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
Isaiah‘s words are simple but true: “In repentance and rest you shall be saved, in quietness and trust is your strength” (Isaiah 30:15). If we are going to be spiritually successful, we must come to a point where we realize that nothing surprises God. He knows when tragedy is going to strike or when disappointment is going to hit, and He has a plan for handling these.
Nothing is too great for Him. He has promised to provide for your needs ¬ perfectly, completely, and on time. (Philippians 4:19) If He does not answer a certain prayer immediately, it is for a reason. Usually if we are willing to wait for His timing, we will find that He has a greater blessing in store.
Accepting His timetable and the limitations He places on a given situation helps to dispel rising anxiety. Therefore, let Him provide for you in His timing. Keeping a daily journal of your prayers and how He answers each one is a good way to build your faith and trust in Him.
When you accept life as being given to you from the hand of God then you will do what Helen Lemmel’s song says – you turn your eyes toward Jesus. You will look full into His glorious face and find mercy and grace, forgiveness and hope, peace and everlasting security.
Peter wanted to walk on the water to Jesus. Like a child, he wanted to imitate his teacher. Surely Peter’s faith made God’s heart glad, especially as he stepped out and began walking to his Savior. But suddenly the roar of the wind and the crashing of the sea became monsters in his mind. Fear swept through his being, and he began to sink. This is when he cried out: “Lord, save me!” and Jesus reached down and took him by the hand. (Matthew 14:30-31)
What would you give to experience the peace of God in your life? Would you give up worrying? Are you willing to lay down the anger that haunts your soul because someone has done something to hurt or wound you? God knows the hurt you have experienced. Will you trust Him in quietness knowing that He has not forgotten you, but stands ready to heal you?
We call God’s peace unshakable, because there has never been a time or an event when God has been disturbed. His peace and presence are sure. They are immovable
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