The War is Over!
At the close of the Pacific Theater of World War II, every Japanese soldier surrendered…except four: Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda and three of his men. Somehow Lieutenant Onoda and his group never received their superior officer’s message to surrender. Therefore, the holdouts would not believe the war was over!
For the next three decades, Onoda and his men sought to avoid capture by the “enemy.” In their minds, they were still at war. But slowly and surely, as the years passed by, one by one, the lieutenant’s men were killed or surrendered…but not Onoda.
Can you imagine the shock this soldier’s family must have felt when they were informed he was still alive? Onoda finally surrendered on March 9, 1974, at age 53—but only after his former commander met him and personally read the order that all combat activity was to cease. For Onoda, the war was over at last…30 years after it had ended!
Now let’s talk about the two of you—about your lives, both together and as individuals. Have you received the official communiqué yet? Has someone come to you and relayed the message?
The message that the war is over!
“What war?” you ask.
The war between God and sinners.
What a great message! God is no longer at war with you and us. We “sinners” can have peace with God. (And pardon us, but we’re assuming that you consider yourselves to be sinners, too. Even the great apostle Paul confessed himself to be a sinner. In fact, he said, “I am the worst ” of sinners—1 Timothy 1:15 nlt.)
But even though we are all sinners, God has made peace with us through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1). The war is over. And because we are at peace with God, we can now enter into Jesus’ powerful promise of the peace of God:
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you ( John 14:27).
Peace! A heart at rest. Serenity. This is what the whole world is looking for, isn’t it? Now, the worldly kind of peace is defined as peace without conflict—world peace. But the peace of God is vastly different. The peace of God is tranquility…in any, all, and every circumstance.
Jesus offers you this kind of peace—His peace. He says, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you.” Yes, Jesus is offering you His peace—the peace of God. That’s God’s promise. But you can choose not to trust God. You can choose to continue to be anxious and worried. It’s your choice. And, believe us, your choice will make a difference!
Lord, help us to choose peace over worry. Whenever we are uncertain about the future or our present problems, may we simply trust You and not our frail human “wisdom.”