Times of stress can make us feel as though we have been thrown overboard, tossed from the safety and comfort of our ships into a tumultuous sea. Traumatic events - whether injuries, losses, wars, or relational fractures - shock our systems like a plunge into cold water, momentarily destabilizing us. All we can do, it seems, is watch as waves and wind batter and shatter the only sources of security we have ever known!
We are living in a time of unprecedented trauma, when storms of epic proportions are being unleashed against our world. It’s a time of compounded trauma: each event triggers another. Stress is emerging like bands of a storm, wanting to draw us into the very center of its turmoil.
King David expressed so well how this feels. He wrote: “For the waves of death encompassed me, the torrents of destruction assailed me; the cords of Sheol entangled me; the snares of death confronted me.” (2 Samuel 22:5-6)
It is important for the Bride of Christ to remember that her security is in Christ alone, not in things she might hold dear. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Although it may seem like the Lord Himself has cut your lifeline and detached you from the safety of any “ship” you have relied on in the past, I believe this SEVERING from the old is what’s necessary for a stronger TETHERING to your empowered, new-creation life!
Christ in you is the hope of glory! I hear the Spirit saying: “We have this hope as an anchor for our souls.”
DO NOT DRIFT AWAY!
Hebrews 2:1b reads: “We must pay much closer attention than ever to the things that we have heard, so that we do not drift away from truth.”
As I pondered recent events that have seemed, in some cases, beyond our ability to endure, I wanted to honor the words of this scripture and pay close attention to the Lord’s heart. I asked: “Lord, what do You need us to know in order to successfully weather these storms? What are YOU doing right now?”
His answer was simple: “I am releasing peace to My Bride. It is My peace that will crush Satan beneath your feet!”
PEACE THAT WARS
At first blush, “crushing Satan” does not seem like an accurate description of what peace does! Everything in our human nature prefers to war, resist, defend, and fight against anything we perceive as a threat.
Yet just as it is better to conserve energy in the water by floating rather than thrashing, so it is better to abide in peace and stillness when storms come. (See Mark 4:38-40)
Peace is accessed not through the emotions, but through the indwelling Spirit of God.
Because Christ lives within believers, we are able to have a peace that “passes understanding.” (Philippians 4:7) This means that when things don’t make sense; when evil acts are beyond description; when pain and suffering cause us to cry out for mercy; we can rely upon our intimate knowledge of Him to give us deeper peace.
Just as the human brain has the amazing ability to protect our core identity by subconsciously “burying” overwhelming memories of trauma, so God has designed a brilliant “Master spiritual system” in which His Holy Spirit is embedded in the human spirit by faith at our new birth. This Spirit-empowered system trumps every other world or demonic system that could ever work against us!
There is no internal or external system, no matter how intricate or corrupt, that can override God’s plans for our lives because the Lord and Master of all abides peacefully within us!
Paul writes in Ephesians 1:11 (TPT): “Through our union with Christ we too have been claimed by God as His own inheritance. Before we were even born, He gave us our destiny, that we would fulfill the plan of God who always accomplishes every purpose and plan in His heart.”
Paul adds later: “...He alone is the leader and source of everything needed in the Church.” (Ephesians 1:22)
HOW TO ACCESS PEACE
I believe there are three primary “Master keys” the Lord gives us to access internal peace in turbulent times.
Like prophecy, peace is not automatic. These keys must be used to unlock our spiritual inheritance in this earthly realm.
The first key is our WORSHIP. More than any other weapon, I believe worship is damaging to the enemy of our souls because it was once his specialty, too (See Ezekiel 28). As we worship God for who He is, rather than dwelling on how situations appear, the testimony and sound of God’s Name penetrates the lies that fill our minds or cloud the atmosphere.
This type of heart-interaction with the Lord draws Him close to us and us to Him. (Psalm 22:3) It is impossible to authentically worship God while still dwelling on negative thoughts! Worship pulls our spirits and souls up out of earthly or second-heaven depression and confusion into throne-room clarity.
The second is the WORD. To access the mind of Christ, including His peaceful thoughts, we must know the Word of Christ.
Knowing what the Bible says about any situation in our lives empowers us to think correctly and envision solutions instead of ruminating on problems. Confessing and decreeing what God says is the key to breakthroughs and turnarounds in our homes, marriages, finances, and workplaces, since everything is in subjection to the Word of Christ (Hebrews 2:8; 1 Corinthians 15:27).
In addition, it is the Word alone that strengthens our bodies, souls, and spirits:
[Jesus is] “...the exact representation and perfect imprint of His Father’s essence, upholding and maintaining and propelling all things (the entire physical and spiritual universe) by His powerful word (carrying the universe along to its predetermined goal). (Hebrews 1:3, AMP)
The third is PRAYER, especially our PRAYER LANGUAGE. Times of stress are inherently difficult and often rob us of adequate words to pray. The Holy Spirit is given to believers as our Helper, not to satisfy our selfish desires, but to enable us to reach Jesus and the Father’s heart, even in places of extreme weakness (Romans 8:26-27).
To pray in the Spirit (using tongues) is to pray a “perfect prayer” that is in complete unity with the mind, heart, and purposes of the Lord. It is to join Christ in His ongoing work of intercession before the Father’s throne, becoming His “prayer partner.”
Many believers think of praying in tongues only as a form of intercession for others. Yet because you are a tripartite being, it is possible to intercede in the Spirit even for wounds in your own soul, trusting that Christ hears, understands, and desires to heal every place of trauma or loss within you, too. This is a wonderful miracle of our new creation life!
Each one of these three keys, when used, empowers heaven’s angels to respond to the Word of God and minister on your behalf. Angels enforce God’s Word, including the Word of the Lord as decreed through your mouth!
Returning to 2 Samuel, David continues: “In my distress I called upon the Lord; to my God I called. From his temple he heard my voice, and my cry came to His ears… He sent from on high, He took me, He drew me out of many waters. He rescued me from my strong enemy, from those who hated me, for they were too mighty for me. They confronted me in the day of my calamity, but the Lord was my support. He brought me out into a broad place; He rescued me, because He delighted in me.” (2 Samuel 22:7; 17-20)
THE ANCHOR OF HOPE
We share David’s hope of Christ’s deliverance. Jesus is the anchor for our souls!
Anchors are not known for their lightness; they are weighty and can pull against the winds and tides to provide stability in stormy seas. Anchors typically secure us to the what lies below.
Yet in the Kingdom of God, up is down and down is up!
Our hope is in Jesus Christ, who penetrated the veil and secured a place for us in the Holy of Holies. Our faith is what tethers us to the anchor of the sure and steadfast words of Christ, pulling us upward over storms and waves, and causing us to walk securely on our high places.
Do not allow doubt to toss you about like Peter did in his storm! Just He did for that first disciple, Jesus is calling you through His Word to come up higher; to walk on “paths your feet have not traveled.” (Isaiah 41:3)
God’s unstoppable plan is the revealing of Christ to the rulers, powers, and principalities of the air through YOU, as you trust in Him when faith seems impossible. His plan was always to unveil a love and peace so deep and powerful inside of you that nothing could deter you from advancing towards Him and transforming everything in your path!
It is this peace that compelled every apostle to live and die for the love of Jesus. It is this same peace Jesus is imparting to us today, to help us overcome impossible opposition. Of the INCREASE of HIS GOVERNMENT and PEACE there will be no end! He will reign on David’s throne and over His Kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from this time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this. (Isaiah 9:7)
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A severe hearing loss from childhood caused Deborah Perkins to develop what she now calls her secret weapon: tuning in to God's voice. A Wellesley College graduate and an award-winning writer, Deborah is now a wife and mother of 3 boys. Deborah has devoted over 25 years to professional and lay Christian ministry in New England and beyond. Her passion is inspiring people to cultivate greater intimacy with God.