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If we define peace as the absence of conflict and Jesus will give us his peace, does that mean Jesus did not have any conflict? The answer will depend on how you look at this question. Jesus had a great deal of conflict in his life. His family gave him some conflict: his mother wanted him to provide wine for the wedding. Conflict came from his background, Nathanael asked if any good can come out of Nazareth? Even from a place that should have been a safe haven for him brought great conflict: the Jewish leaders increased their dislike for him. The greatest conflict came from Satan. Jesus was lead into the wilderness to be tempted by Satan and Satan continued that temptation to the cross. As Jesus suffered conflict all of his life we will as well. Our conflict will come from four areas, our family, our background, our friends and Satan who wants to destroy us or a combination of these areas.

Since Jesus was involved with conflict how can he have peace? This peace is rooted in the fruit of the spirit found in Galatians 5: 22, it is the love of God. This peace comes from the close relationship that Jesus, the man, has with God, the father, through the Holy Spirit. Jesus was fully accepted by the father and anything he asked for would be granted. (careful here: Jesus asked not to go to the cross, but said your will be done.) The life that Jesus lived was a life in perfect harmony with God. If the harmony was broken by sin, God would have rejected him because God can not look upon sin.

Because the fruit of the spirit is love, Jesus tells his followers in John 14: 27 that he is giving them his peace. Jesus is giving his peace to all who will receive it but not everyone will accept it. How then do we receive his peace? First let us understand what this peace is. Due to the sin of Adam and Eve we have been separated form God, therefore it is our reconciliation with God through the forgiveness of our sins. We are then adopted into the family of God and become brothers and sisters with Jesus. By receiving the Spirit of Christ, sin no longer has a hold over us and we have peace.

As stated before not everyone will accept the peace that Jesus offers. We have been taught from an early age that we are to be independent. We are also taught that we should do what makes us happy. Both of these statements are a rejection of the love and peace that Jesus has to offer us. To accept This peace we must learn to imitate Christ. By asking for the forgiveness of our sins and asking Christ to inter into our hearts, we can experience the peace he has for us. As we grow in our faith the peace of God will also grow in our lives.

My prayer for you is that as you imitate Christ, his spirit will grow in you and you will feel his peace grow as well.

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