Peace through the Lord Jesus Christ
There are many names, titles, and concepts used throughout the scriptures to refer to the Lord Jesus Christ. One of those names was used by the ancient prophet Isaiah when describing the nature and character of the coming Messiah. Isaiah said that His name would be called “The Prince of Peace” (see Isaiah 9:6). On one occasion, the Savior said to His disciples, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). This counsel was meant not solely for His disciples; the Master, because of His infinite love for all mankind, proffers the same admonition to every person.
This life is replete with its many trials and adversities. There have been times in all of our lives when we have sought comfort and peace from the mundane things of the world that seem to constantly bombard us. President Thomas S. Monson, President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (which church is frequently misnamed the Mormon Church), has reminded us:
In a world where peace is such a universal quest, we sometimes wonder why violence walks our streets, accounts of murder and senseless killings fill the columns of our newspapers, and family quarrels and disputes mar the sanctity of the home and smother the tranquility of so many lives.
Perhaps we stray from the path which leads to peace and find it necessary to pause, to ponder, and to reflect on the teachings of the Prince of Peace and determine to incorporate them in our thoughts and actions and to live a higher law, walk a more elevated road, and be a better disciple of Christ (“The Path to Peace,” Ensign, May 1994, 60).
If a person strays from that path which leads to peace of which President Monson spoke, he will find that there will be circumstances in his life which will overwhelm him and rob him of any joy and peace that he might have had. As long as he keeps his feet planted on the path and his focus on Him, he has the calm assurance and reminder of the Savior when He said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
My dear mother used to say to her four children, “No matter how bad you may think your situation is, there is always someone, somewhere who is having a lot more difficult time than yourself.” I have often thought about my mother’s words in recent days as I have dealt with some of the trials and adversaries of life. There are times in every person’s life when it seems that that the load that he carries is heavy and too much to bear. There are times when a person yearns for relief and peace from the stress of life, but it seems that peace is nowhere to be found. How many times has a person cried out in the middle of the night, “Why are these things happening to me?” or “How much more am I supposed to take?” or something very similar. For all who are weary and heavy burdened, as the Savior reminded the Apostle Paul, He gives this gentle reminder, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness” (See 2 Corinthians 12:9). He also extends this invitation, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28–30).
President Thomas S. Monson, the President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has taught:
If, why, where, how—those recurring words—do not bring back the lost son, the perfect body, the plans of parents, or the dreams of youth. Self-pity, personal withdrawal, or deep despair will not bring the peace, the assurance, or help which are needed. Rather, we must go forward, look upward, move onward, and rise heavenward.
It is imperative that we recognize that whatever has happened to us has happened to others. They have coped and so must we. We are not alone. Heavenly Father’s help is near (“Miracles—Then and Now,” Ensign, Nov 1992, 68).
So, when the night seems the darkest, the storm winds of adversity are blowing their strongest, and it appears that the world is closing in, where can a person turn for peace? When a person feels all alone, distressed, battle worn, weary, and wounded, “Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there?” (See Jeremiah 8:22). The Great Physician is there, and He who is The Prince of Peace stands ready to calm any storm that we may face in life with just the sound of His voice, “Peace be still!” His benevolent gift of peace is bestowed individually: “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him” (Revelation 3:20).
President Thomas S. Monson further reminds us, “The passport to peace is the practice of prayer. The feelings of the heart, humbly expressed rather than a mere recitation of words, provide the peace we seek” (“Gifts,” Ensign, May 1993, 59).
By Keith Brown