Peace Be With You: Finding Calm Amidst the Chaos

Rev. Bradley Swire   -  

In the hustle and bustle of our digital age, our phones constantly ping with reminders, notifications, and updates to keep us on track. It’s fascinating to think about how, before the era of smartphones, people used simpler methods like notes, strings, or even just memory to remember important tasks. Yet, for the disciples of Jesus, the reminder they needed wasn’t about a daily task, but rather a divine truth that had been fulfilled.

In the scripture from John 20:19-29, we find the disciples secluded, grappling with doubt and fear after hearing of Jesus’ resurrection. They were in a state of disbelief, as the practical reality of their time was that the dead do not rise. Amidst their turmoil, Jesus appears and greets them with a profound, “Peace be with you.” This wasn’t just a casual greeting; it was a declaration of His living presence and a reassurance of peace amidst their chaos.

This phrase “Peace be with you” transcends its initial context. It’s not merely a historical account of Jesus’ post-resurrection appearance; it is a perpetual promise. Jesus imparts peace not as the world gives, but as only He can—calming our souls and encouraging us to listen to the voice of God rather than the overwhelming noises of the world.

Consider the story of a man and his daughter, Emily, working in their garden. Emily’s desire to give a blooming flower to God and her innocent, yet profound interaction with her faith reminds us of Jesus’ words in Luke 18:17: “I assure you that whoever doesn’t welcome God’s kingdom like a child will never enter it.” This child-like faith is unburdened by self-sufficiency and ego; it is pure and dependent, much like our relationship with God should be.

“Peace be with you,” therefore, is not just a comfort; it’s a call to action. It’s an invitation to remove the barriers of doubt, fear, and self that often hinder our faith. It’s a reminder that our reliance on God should be as natural and essential as breathing.

In our narrative today, the scars on Jesus’ hands and side were the tangible evidence of His resurrection and His ongoing presence among His disciples. These scars are emblematic of the proof of His sacrifice and the depth of His commitment to us. They are reminders that God’s presence is sufficient for our deepest needs, without constant reaffirmation.

How often do we, like the disciples, find ourselves overwhelmed by the pressures and voices of the world? How frequently do we feel that there’s too much of us in the equation, and not enough dependence on God? Jesus invites us to approach God with the heart of a child, unencumbered and trusting.

As Jesus stood among the disciples offering peace, He stands with us today. His scars are not just historical marks; they are present reminders that as long as He lives and reigns, we have no reason to fear. Let us then clear the way for His peace to enter, letting it transform our chaos into a calm that only He can provide.

In the midst of your challenges, may you hear Jesus saying to you now, “Peace be with you.” Let this assurance guide you, comfort you, and remind you of the everlasting presence that walks with you every day.