Several years ago, I lost my younger brother to violence. It was unexpected as all tragedies typically are. I was also in the midst of dealing with my own personal demons as well. My marriage was teetering on the brink of divorce, and in the midst of my own troubles, my family now looked to me to help console them during this troubled time.
My family asked me to do the eulogy, and I officiated the entire funeral and burial service. As an ordained minister, it was my duty to comfort the bereaved. The matriarch of our family had asked me to do this, and I was not going to decline.
I was grieving myself. Hurting…wondering if I could ‘pull it off’ per se. Wishing my brother and I had spent more time together. Dealing with who this murderer was that took him. Why it had happened? Why did God let it happen? I did not feel ‘qualified’ to speak to anyone really. Not with all that, I was struggling with. Why I was being selected during this trying time in my own life to speak to my family?
I searched for answers.
In searching to find understanding the Lord, lead me in his word and specifically to Philippians 4:6, 7.
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
In my own search to ascribe meaning to such a horrible event, the knowledge about there being sin in the world, and my understanding of how Satan is a real force left me little comfort during this time.
I found that in spite of my searching nothing this side of Heaven would give me what I needed to come to grips with such a useless and senseless killing. It was then that I realized, and saw one of the truths of this scripture.
Simply, that there is a peace that passes understanding.
When we are in trying times and when we seek out meaning and ask why me? The reality is that sometimes there is silence to our inquiries. Nevertheless, I believe that God is never truly silent, we just cannot often hear over the static of our emotions and own minds. Yet here in this scripture God gives us an answer.
We need the peace that passes our understanding.
We need this type of peace that can bring silence to our questions and make our heart bear the unbearable again. In the same way, that lift can supersede the law of gravity likewise the peace of God can supersede our need for understanding and give us consolation during difficult times. It’s a special peace in that it comes from God. This peace has two key ingredients in that it accomplishes two things. Two powerful balms we need desperately when we are hurting and asking why.
This peace, ‘keeps’ our heart and our mind. Which is a good thing because, when our hearts are hurting and broken, and our minds riddled with doubt, and questions: believe me you need something to help hold it together. This does the trick.
So when you find yourself asking why, when you are struggling to find meaning where there seemingly is none.
Settle your heart and mind, and tell God the despite failing to understand, that he grant you an anxiety free mind, and bestow on you the peace that only he can give. A peace that would protect, shield, comfort and stand as a sentinel against any and all things that would bring you into anxiety and distress. That both your heart and mind during rough times be liberated from the paralyzing hurt that can come from difficulty and pain.
To those that are hurting, and or know those that are. I pray that the peace of God would rule in your heart, and that you might experience the reality of this promise.
If you have something meaningful to add, please leave me a comment. I would love to hear from you.