Friday, December 7, 2018

Finding Peace Despite Broken Relationships at Christmas

By: Sarah Geringer

Are you suffering from a broken relationship right now?

I'm dealing with a few of them, and if we were having tea together in real life, I'd let you in on the details.

Suffice it to say, my broken relationships threaten my inner peace.

I'm not ignorant of our enemy Satan's schemes. Ever since I returned from a mountaintop experience this July, I feel like I've been under spiritual attack. Since relationships matter so much to me, I'm sure that's why they've been targeted.

But I'm not letting the enemy have the upper hand, even though I'm hurting.

The enemy wants to destroy your peace by messing with your relationships. Christmas seems to be the perfect time of the year for the enemy to launch fiery arrows into our relationships. He'll do anything to distract us from the real reason for the season: Jesus.

We can choose to wallow in the heartache of broken relationships, or we can reach out for God's peace.

God is showing me I can find peace in the midst of the problems. He's showing me to own my part but not take on the other person's responsibility. In fact, that very habit has gotten me in trouble over the years. When I take responsibility for other people's happiness, my peace is eventually destroyed. People-pleasing never leads to peace.

In his quiet way, God is showing me that I can only control my own behavior and actions. I can't be responsible for the way anyone else feels. Also, if I need to confront them, I can't count on getting a pleasant reaction--no matter how well-planned, well-worded, and well-timed my confrontation may be. They may retaliate or even start a relationship war. I can't stop them, no matter how much I care.

God is teaching me that though my broken relationships cause me pain, I can find peace in his presence, anytime and anywhere.

I can trust that he will never let me down, shut me out, manipulate me, criticize me, or use me.

I can trust him to speak to me through his word, through Christian friends, through sermons, through songs, and through books. And I can hear his loving voice through prayer, all day long.

I can trust him to value me, treasure me, cherish me, listen to me, and uphold me. I am his precious child, and in his presence I find peace in abundance.

Do you know God will do the same for you in your broken relationships? He is waiting for you to come to him, with arms open wide.

I'll close this devotion with these words of Jesus. 

"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid." John 14:27 NIV

I hope you will meditate on Jesus' words each time a relationship problem threatens this Christmas. God is ready to give you peace if you surrender your broken relationships to his loving care.

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Have a wonderful weekend!

Blessings and God's peace to you,

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Reflection questions:

1. How do these words of Jesus bring you peace today?

2. Which relationship needs God's help and healing in your life?

1 comment:

  1. This fits perfectly with my quiet time reading today when Jesus calmed the storm that He and the disciples got caught in. I was also thinking about that song that declares how God sometimes calms the storm, but always calms His child--no matter how it all turns out. That's the peace I'm claiming as I deal with anxieties and pressures each day, my friend! Love this!


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