From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Many people believe that if they follow Christ, their lives will be free of problems. After all, they say, didn’t Jesus promise peace? Won’t God take away our troubles and give us health and prosperity? The Bible, however, doesn’t promise this. Yes, it promises peace, but it also promises tribulation. On the surface, this sounds like a paradox; after all, how can we be at peace and also be at war at the same time?
When warring nations sign a peace treaty, the fighting between them stops—and this is what has happened between God and us. At one time, we were at war with God, but now “we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1). The peace that Jesus spoke of tells of an inner peace. This is different from a problem-free life. Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you” (John 14:27), and He also said, “In the world you will have tribulation” (John 16:33). But in the midst of trouble, He is there with us and His promises—all of them—are true. We do have peace when we follow Christ—an inner peace that comes from a deep and abiding trust in His promises.
The wars that once raged in our hearts have ended. This peace is real—just as real as God Himself. It is an inner peace—a peace in our souls and minds and emotions—that keeps us calm even in the midst of life’s worst storms, and God’s presence is ever near.
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)