Looking at the blackboard 

You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you

Isaiah 26:3

We need to get into the habit of fixing our eyes by faith on the Lord. The psalmist spoke of the person whose ‘heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord’ (Ps 112:7). That’s what we might call the steadfast gaze of faith. And Scripture guarantees it will result in peace. ‘ You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast’ says Isaiah, ‘because he trusts in you’….. so don’t look at problems. Look at the Lord – fixedly.

This is important. If we have fears or anxieties that rob us of peace, the Holy Spirit will give us peace by making real to us the power and love of God. But we’ve got to co-operate. He can’t make God’s love and power real if we persist in fixing our minds on our problems.

A teacher can only make the lesson plain to the pupils who are looking at the blackboard. The Holy Spirit is a teacher. Let us fix our gaze therefore on the One about whom He wants to teach us.

 

Mind controlled by the Spirit

Some years ago on a seven hour flight I settled down to pray. But, try as I might, I couldn’t. I felt ill at ease and had no peace. I knew what the trouble was. It seemed likely that we’d have to move to another mission field where costs were high. After four years in Bolivia we had built an adobe house and had scraped together some bits and pieces of furniture. We could only sell at a loss. How could we manage in Argentina? Oh I knew the Lord wouldn’t let us starve, but I was unhappy. Quietly I thought of a verse of Scripture. ‘I will never fail you nor forsake you’. But it didn’t work! It gave me no peace. Determined that it should, I opened my Bible and hunted it up. This is what I read.

‘Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you. Never will I forsake you. ( Hebrews 13:5). I knew what was wrong at once. I was bothered about security on earth when I should have been thinking of treasure in heaven. I confessed my sin and peace was restored.

Are you haunted by unrest? When carollers sing about peace on earth does it seem to you a mockery ? Well, God is offering you a special gift. He paid a tremendous price for it but He wants you to have it.

Give more time to His word. Stop resisting God when He speaks to you through it. Ask Him to teach you more about the blood of His Son. Stay your heart upon Jehovah. Stop fretting about earthly security. Seek treasure in heaven.

As you do so, you’ll find a great, perfect, inconceivable, unearthly peace that will flow on and on like a river.

Prince of peace, accept my praise that you are peace and that you give peace. Help me claim what you offer: Help me to set my affections not on earthly security but on things above.