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The Shalom of God
By Victoria Osteen - Dec 22, 2017
Several years ago we did a Night of Hope in the Jerusalem Theater in Israel. It was a magnificent night and a historic trip for us. We were able to visit some of the biblical sites where Jesus walked and to see where He prayed. I loved it so much!

One thing that stood out to me during our visit was that every time we were greeted by a Jewish person it was with "Shalom." Whenever we said good-bye, they sent us away with "Shalom." When we gave a bellman a tip, he said, "Shalom!" I liked it so much that you could say I got obsessed with shalom. I even bought shalom coasters to put my coffee mug on! Six months after we got home, I was still saying, "Shalom!" and my family was saying, "All right already, enough with the shaloms!"

I was all about shalom, and why wouldn't I have been? The Hebrew word "shalom" is so rich in meaning. It means "a peace of mind, a calmness, a serenity from within, a wholeness within." Who doesn't want to live in peace, in tranquility, to be free from strife? Peace is God's gift to us and is meant to be a constant in our lives because of His presence in our lives. Romans 5:1 says, "Since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." We have peace with God, we are friends with God, and He has made us His children.

But there is always something that is trying to steal our peace. It is so easy to let mistakes and failures, other people, and our life circumstances disrupt our inner peace. The Bible says that "we are to seek peace and pursue it" (1 Peter 3:11). We receive peace as God's gift, but we also have to pursue it and maintain it in every area of our lives.

Contrary to what we often think, peace is not the absence of trouble. Peace is the presence of God in the midst of trouble. Consider what Jesus said to His disciples on the night before He was going to be crucified. "Peace I leave with you. My peace I give you, not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled" (John 14:27). He was saying, "I have great peace that's going to get Me through the pain and suffering of the cross and bring Me to the other side victorious. My peace I give to you, and it will bring you through life victoriously." It's a matter of having the peace of Jesus on the inside even though there are troubles on the outside.

Walk in the peace and the power of the shalom of God.
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