Are you at peace with God? - James Bell

Many people today are in conflict with God, because they are trying to live their way, rather than His way.

They may not even realize they are at war with God, but if they live a life ignoring Him, they will reap difficult problems. The Bible tells us this is a universal problem.

Here are some thoughts from "The Purpose of Christmas," by Rick Warren, to illustrate the point: "We're all like sheep who've wandered off and gotten lost. We've all done our own thing, and gone our own way. And God has piled all our sins, everything we've done wrong on Jesus.

"The Bible calls these bad habits and attitudes 'works of the flesh.' The Message translation of the Bible says, 'It's obvious what kind of life develops out of trying to get your own way all the time -- repetitive, loveless, cheap sex, a stinking accumulation of mental and emotional garbage, frenzied and joyless grabs for happiness, cutthroat competition, all-consuming-yet-never-satisfied wants, a brutal temper, an impotence to love or be loved, divided homes and divided lives, the vicious habit of depersonalizing everyone into a rival, and uncontrollable addictions."

Now, contrast the effects of being at peace with God -- all the qualities you'd like to have in your life. The Bible calls these the "fruits of the spirit." When the Holy Spirit controls our lives ,He will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Do you have an unconscious desire or need to be at peace with your Heavenly Father? Most people seem to sense incompleteness in their lives, but they don't know what they are looking for. They feel something is "missing" and may say: "There's got to be more to life than this."

So they go through life trying all kinds of things -- activities, achievements, drugs, affairs, memberships, etc., trying to realize their desires and to fulfill their needs. When all the time, what they really need is to be reconciled to God.

The only way anyone can make peace with God is to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and accept Him as their Savior and Lord. The Bible says: "God was in Christ, making peace between the world [all people] and Himself. In Christ, God did not hold the world guilty of its sins."

According to Romans 5:10, "Even when we were God's enemies, He made peace with us, because His Son died for us. Yet something even greater than friendship is ours, now that we are at peace with God, we will be saved by His Son's life."

How can you find peace with God? Only by total surrender to Him through faith. You can't earn it or deserve it! As Job's friend said: (Job 22:21) "Stop quarreling with God. If you agree with Him, you will have peace at last. I assume you want to have peace with God, to live your life in such a way as to please Him in all you do.

When you surrender completely to the Lord Jesus Christ, He will send His Holy Spirit into your heart and life to teach you and guide you to follow the right pathways and make the right decisions.

I'm not saying you will never make another mistake, but you will have the wisdom of God to show you right from wrong.

You will have to learn to use His advice, which will enrich your life. I trust you will decide to make your peace with God, for He has already provided the way for us.

Now, it is our decision to choose Christ, and live! I pray you will choose wisely.