Colossians 3:15- And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.
“Why can’t we all just get along?” – Rodney King
I wish it was just that easy Rodney- I really do. But the truth is….we live in a world of conflict.
We fight and argue with other people. We fight with God Himself!
Nations bomb nations.
Even our pets bite us!
Heck- we can’t even get along with ourselves!
The bible states (Psalm 51:5 et al) that we are born with a nature that is predisposed to fighting. Because of our fallen nature we are prone to being self-centered. And creatures that are consumed with self will eventually find themselves in conflict with other creatures and their selfish desires. It’s just bound to happen!
God’s desire- His will- is for us to be at peace. To live in a conflict free state.
He wants us to be reconciled to the ones we are in conflict with. Yes even your cat.
Sounds great! But how is this possible to experience?
Luke 18:27-But he said, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”
Left to myself, I do not have the capacity to know how to relate to others, myself or God in a healthy way. I just can’t do it. I have failed time and time again. My best efforts still lead to conflict.
Paul says that this is a matter of the heart and that’s why it is impossible for us to master. The sinful rebellious nature of our heart leads to outward behaviors which in turn lead into conflict.
I am in need of peace. Reconciliation.
Paul says we need the “peace of Christ” to “rule our hearts.”
God is the only hope we have for experiencing real peace.
Colossians 1:19-20- And it is through Christ that we experience this reconciliation with God that heals our hearts. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
Though we were far from God and alienated from Him- He has drawn us near to Him through Christ. Thru the divine wrath of God poured out upon our substitute- our relationship with God is restored!
Now we are adopted into the family so to speak. We have a seat at God’s table.
It is then out of this restored relationship that we learn a new way to relate to ourselves and others and we are given what the bible calls the “ministry of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18)
The peace God has given me in Christ Jesus is now turned outward and I am free to live at peace with others. Jesus is the source of fulfillment for all of my needs. He is my satisfaction.And if I am truly satisfied in Him then I no longer need to look for others to give me things they are not willing- or able to give. My selfish existence has been “crucified” and I am a new creature. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
The end of Colossians 3:15 then commands me to be thankful. I am to be thankful for what I have received in Christ. I am to be thankful that although I am who I am- just an unloveable, grumpy mess- He chose to love me anyways!