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"Depart from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it." Psalm 34: 14

"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God." Matthew 5:9

If your week has been anything like mine and you feel at war with yourself, friends, family, spouse, etc., then this post is for you. I have learned one of the biggest ways the devil worms his way into marriages, families, churches, friendships or any other relationships is by causing discord. He loves to try to steal peace. Peace is a gift that can only be given by God. It is a gift and we must seek peace daily. Have you ever noticed when the Lord is really moving in a church, family, relationship, etc., that is when you see the most strife? This is the devil's number one tactic for attacking churches, in my opinion.

A while back I really dug into learning about what true peace is and how we obtain it. I think I misunderstood peace. I thought I would pray for peace and it would just hit me out nowhere. BAM! I have peace. What I have learned is you have to work to obtain and retain peace in your life. By work, I mean seek peace daily in all situations. YOU have to pray about it and make the conscious decision to seek peace daily. When you're angry with your coworker about a situation, YOU have to strive to make peace with the person. When you have been hurt or offended by someone, in order to have peace in your heart, you must seek peace with the one who hurt you. You are responsible for letting go of anger, strife, greed, jealousy, etc. and seeking peace in the situation. If the person you are seeking peace with does not reciprocate it, THAT IS ON THEM. You have done your part to make peace and now it is time to give it over to God and let Him handle the rest.

For a long time, I struggled with finding peace because I was too busy focusing on everyone else's peace and their happiness. The Bible says, "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called children of God." Matthew 5:9 When you are doing your part to seek peace in all situations, you are blessed. An excellent example of a peacemaker in the Bible who I feel is often overlooked is Abigail. In 1 Samuel 25, we read the story of Abigail and how she saved numerous lives by striving for peace. Her husband Nabal, was a wicked man who insulted David after David and his army did Nabal a courtesy by protecting his shepherds and his property. David asked for provisions for his men as a courtesy for their protection and Nabal not only refuses, but insults David. Instead of seeking peace, David's anger flared and his rallied his army to kill Nabal and all of his male family members and employees. Abigail, after hearing this news, gathers many provisions and runs to meet David before he and his men can slaughter many lives. She pleads on her husbands behalf and saves all of those lives. She made a decisive action to save those lives by seeking peace with David. She did all of this while her husband was throwing a massive party and getting drunk on wine. She decided to wait to tell her husband what she had done until the next day. Once she told him, "his heart failed him and he became like a stone. About ten days later, the Lord struck Nabal and he died." 1 Samuel 25: 37-38

Because Abigail sought peace in the situation and took decisive action to obtain it, she not only saved lives, but was greatly blessed by the Lord. Word got back to David about Nabal's death and he took Abigail as a wife because of her peace-seeking actions. One of my favorite things about Abigail's story is how she QUIETLY sought out peace with David and didn't tell anyone but the servants who helped her until the next morning. She did not seek peace for clout or recognition. Peace should never be sought out to elevate one's image or to bring attention to that person. It should be sought out for good and to further the Lord's kingdom. My prayer for you this week is to seek peace instead of anger, to choose hospitality over hostility as Abigail did, to make peace with those who have wronged you, and also, to make peace with yourself. We are all struggling in some way, and I pray this week, you make peace with whatever it is causing you strife and discord in your life. I pray you let the heaviness of whatever it is you're holding on to fall and make peace with it. I pray you let go of the repressed anger holding you back from making amends and seek peace. I pray when you are faced with conflict, you seek peace instead of hostility. I pray you break the chains holding you back and rise up with peace and joy and love in your heart. I love y'all and hope you have a great week!



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