Recently, in response to a past blog, a friend asked the following question. Though I answered him within the context of the blog post, I thought it was a great question and deserved to be expanded on in (a little) more detail than I gave within my original answer.
“[Although I’m not a Christian], I feel like I already have joy, comfort, and peace. So why do I need something else?”
First of all, this is an intriguing and rightful question. I think it’s an amazing accomplishment when, not only do you realize that these passions are an important part of life, but to feel as though you have some measure of fulfillment as well. They’re truly not easy to come by, nor maintain. My thought on this is not so much that you need a “something else”, but to examine from where those feelings and that fulfillment originate:
- Is it something wherein you have to put all the dominoes in place to achieve? In other words, is it something you work at?
- Is it something you work at?
- Or, is it something you are just able to accept, regardless of situations, problems and worries, (whether or not the dominoes are even out of the box).
Do you have these things despite the day-to-day struggles?
If in fact you do, more power to you. I think that’s a great achievement. And, believe me when I say I’m not trying to express that Christians have the market cornered on this. Nor that we’re consistently any good at it. But, to me anyway, it’s the difference between being able to say:
- “Okay, if I can get (or do) A, and B, and C, then I’ll be able to relax, my mind will be at ease, and maybe my wife will get off my back.”
- Or, “Okay, I may not know what the future holds or how we’re going to get there, but I know God is in control and He’ll work out what‘s best for us.”
That’s how I see it anyway. It’s just one of the things (namely within the fruits of the Spirit) that are promised in the Bible to those who earnestly seek Him—Peace.
It’s my belief that this is what is meant by, “a peace that transcends understanding.” When a person can look around at their present situation, totally at peace within it, and think, “Why I feel this way—this peace, this calm—makes absolutely no sense to me. Yet, I’m glad I feel this way.”
Can you imagine the alternative??
To me, the faith I have in Father, Son and Spirit allows me to believe: He is the creator and holder of everything. (He has everything you need.); He also happens to be omniscient. (He knows everything you need. Not want. Need!); Looking to Him first allows you to be at peace with all you have.
More importantly, looking to Him first allows you to be at peace with all you don’t have. That not only applies to the material “stuff” in the world, but to relationships, to achievements, to a planned-out, certain future, etc.
As long as you know the ultimate destination, having already agreed to where you’re heading, who would you rather be? The driver? Or the one in the passenger seat with the tunes and the snacks?