Peace. In our crazy world today, sometimes it seems like peace is hard to come by. It is a struggle to be at peace with others, have peace in our own hearts, and, ultimately, peace with God. The world, the enemy, and our flesh battle against peace or try to convince us that peace can be found in temporary pleasures, circumstances, or people. Thankfully we are not alone in this fight. For those of us who have placed our faith in Christ, God promises us that when we trust in Him, He will give us a gift the world cannot give: peace of mind and heart. When we put all of our hope and trust in God, He will give us peace that surpasses all understanding!
MEMORY VERSE: “I am leaving you with a gift - peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid." John 14:27 (NLT)
In Mark 5:1-20, Jesus met a man who was not at peace. The man was troubled and lived in graveyard. People tried to bind him with chains, but he broke free. He was alone, uncontrollable, and destructive. When Jesus found the man, though, everything changed. Jesus took what was troubling him and gave him peace. Our lives may not look exactly like this man’s did, but we are all born with troubled hearts like his. We are all born at war with God because of our sin. None of us are at peace on our own and there is nothing we can do about it. However, the answer to the man’s troubled heart and our own is the same: an encounter with Jesus. Peace only comes through trusting God.
As you are at dinner this week teach your family about what peace is and what it means. Our definition for peace is: An untroubled heart that comes from trusting God. God is in control and He is really GOOD! So if we truly believe that, our hearts will be settled and not anxious because we know we are safe. A good picture for peace is a really calm lake. The water is not troubled or wavy but rather is still and unmoving. Remind your family that peace ONLY comes from God who is the author and creator of everything, and He personally loves each of us.
As you are in the car with your child this week, practice the memory verse together!
*John 14:27 "I am leaving you with a gift - peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world can not give. So don’t be troubled or afraid." *
As you are putting your family to bed for the night, talk about how the opposite of peace is worry or anxiety. Worry comes when we stop trusting God or when we view our circumstances as bigger than God. Read aloud:
Philippians 4:6-7 "Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."
Pray with your kids, modeling your prayer after those two verses. Tell Him what you need and thank Him for all he has done!
Spend time with your family this week playing a game or two of freeze tag. While playing remember that the purpose is to highlight Jesus and the peace that comes from him.
DIRECTIONS: This game is similar to Freeze Tag. The kids will move around the room (you can give your kids direction like hop, skip, or walk backwards). Once you touch them, they must freeze. None of the other kids can unfreeze them. Continue until all the kids are frozen or “at peace.”
TALK ABOUT: Before they were frozen, were they “at peace?” What happened when you (representing Jesus) touched them? (The encounter with you changed them, put them at peace.) Did all the kids meet the leader at the same time? No, just like believers all meet Jesus at different times but when they do, it changes them!
Thank God for the story He is writing in your life and how He has changed you. Ask Him to help you trust in Him so that you can have the perfect peace that only comes from Him. Thank Him for how He keeps transforming you.
Next week we will continue the month of March with the godly character trait, PEACE. We will learn that trusting God gives peace with how we are created.