How are you this morning? i don’t know about you, but I have been feeling far from peaceful the past few days. The uncertainty and social isolation are taking their toll on this household. But I am taking a new stance today. I am working on a better attitude. So I say to you, “Peace be with you.” Will you say it back to me? For surely, we all need His peace.
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
John 20:19-20 – NIV
Talk about uncertainty. The disciples had endured the horror of Friday, the emptiness of Saturday, and now on that Sunday morning, they wake up to Mary Magdalene crying, “They have taken the Lord away!” Peter and John race for the tomb and find it empty, the stone rolled away. But that wasn’t all, for soon, Mary Magdalene returns exclaiming, “I have seen the Lord!”
Can you imagine the thoughts that were flying around the disciples’ minds that morning? Their brains must have been on overload trying to take it all in. I wonder. Were they instantly overcome with joy or did they struggle to assimilate the information? Did their hearts rise in hope while their minds still quaked in fear? Did they pass the afternoon in quiet contemplation or did they discuss their memories of Jesus’ foretelling of his death and resurrection?
Those questions go unanswered, but we do find the disciples gathered that evening, huddled together behind a locked door, isolated and afraid, separated and uncertain.
Isolated and afraid. Separated and uncertain. Sounds like us right now, doesn’t it? We have heard the Good News. Jesus is alive! We have shared that joyous news with one another. Still, here we are, huddled in our houses, feeling troubled and alone.
But for the disciples, everything changed come evening. There they were, gathered in that room, and suddenly Jesus was standing before them. They could see his nail pierced hands, His wounded side. And they could hear His voice.
What did the risen Lord choose to say to His beloved friends? What were the first words He spoke over them? “Peace be with you.”
Peace. He spoke of peace. His followers had endured the most frightening, the most painful, the most uncertain days of their lives, and Jesus, knowing all that, spoke peace over them. In that one word, He spoke volumes, “Take courage. It is I. Don’t be afraid. Have hope!”
Friends, we are isolated and afraid, huddled behind locked doors, but we are not alone. The Savior stands before us, and His words to us are the same, “Peace be with you.”
We must reject fear and take courage. We must stand on our faith, cling to our confident hope. For the risen Lord is still here with us, and nothing can ever separate us from His great love.
“Peace be with you.”
For I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death can’t, and life can’t. The angels won’t, and all the powers of hell itself cannot keep God’s love away. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, or where we are—high above the sky, or in the deepest ocean—nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us.
Romans 8:38-39 – TLB
O Lord Jesus, You are alive! You are with us. You are for us. You speak Your Peace over us. Let us take courage, and hang on to our confident hope. Help us to feel Your Peace and to share that peace with one another.