The opportunity for disaster in this world is real. This world is one big disaster just waiting to happen. But Jesus says that we can have peace in this present evil dangerous world.
These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you (will) have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Peace comes when we know that God can and will overcome the world on our behalf; that we will be spared from our current situation by the grace, power, and direct involvement of God. This is one of the benefits of faith, for John says:
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. 5 Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? 1 John 5:4, 5
Peace comes when we know that God is favorably involved in our situation and on our behalf. Because of this, true heart peace can only come from God. We can and should comfort each other, but whether that comfort transcends into a deeply settled heart peace depends on how we allow God to comfort us as well. We can tell each other that ‘it will turn out all right,’ and there is some comfort in that, but only an absolute God can say absolutely that, ‘it will turn out to your good – I will do it.’ This kind of knowledge brings peace, and this peace, Paul says, “passes (covers) all understanding.”
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. 9 The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:6-9
The Holman Christian Standard Bible says of verse 7, “And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Once we have God’s peace we still can remember the dangers and problems that may lay ahead, but now there is a blanket of peace that lays over them. This peace, is as if a thick mattress were laid over a pile of sharp knives. Peace covers all the discomforts and worries that a knowledge of a possible calamity can bring. The thoughts are still there but now you are cushioned by the peace, hope, and comfort of God. They can no longer ‘get’ to you.
But you can get to them, if you choose to drop the ‘thoughts of God’ and again pick up the ‘thoughts of fear.’ That is why the scriptures tell us to dwell only on the things that tend toward peace, faith, and victory.
“…dwell on these things.”
This does not just happen. The thoughts of God’s involvement must be ever before you. You must spend the energy, time, and effort to get to know His provision and His character. You must know the love and faithfulness that He desires to show to you through faith and obedience to His word. Draw close to Him and He will draw close to you. Keep His thoughts of peace ever before you and God Himself will be ever before you.
Doing what it takes to make sure that the peace of God is actively working on the inside of you will keep the God of peace actively working for you on the outside.
See also, Faith Knows