What Is Shalom?

Shalom is the Hebrew word for peace. Some of the best definitions of shalom include ideas of completeness, soundness, and wholeness. One Jewish rabbi commented that when you say “Shalom” to someone, you’re really saying, “may you be full of well-being.” Or another way of thinking of shalom is—nothing missing, nothing broken. 

Some have tried to describe shalom as the absence of conflict, but that’s not quite accurate. On the verge of going into the Promised Land to fight their enemies, God commanded Aaron to speak a blessing of peace of the people (Numbers 6:24-26). And just before Jesus said, “Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,” He said, “Blessed are the peacemakers” (Matthew 5:9-10). 

Shalom is not controlled by outward circumstances. Shalom is a deep-seated, rock-solid, unshakable assurance that I am in God’s hand. 

Isaiah describes how we live in shalom like this—

You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind—both its inclination and its character—is stayed on You, because he commits himself to You, leans on You, and hopes confidently in You. (Isaiah 26:3)

How do we do keep our mind stayed on God? The Apostle Paul says, “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). Psychologists call this process metacognition: when we think about what we’re thinking about. It’s being aware of our anxious thoughts that are robbing us of shalom and then talking back to them. 

What often robs us of peace is listening to ourselves instead of talking to ourselves! 

Someone once asked evangelist Smith Wigglesworth, “Smith, how do you feel?” He replied, “I never ask Smith how I feel. I tell him how he feels!” Exactly right! 

Why do we make our thoughts obedient to Jesus? Because one of the titles given to Jesus before He was born was Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), and Jesus assures us that His peace is unlike anything we can ever find in earthly things (John 14:27, 16:33). 

God’s peace is always there, but our divided minds keep us from experiencing His peace. So Isaiah tells us to keep our mind steadfast on God’s goodness, and Paul says the same thing—Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (Philippians 4:6-7)

I want to encourage you to practice what the Bible calls capturing your thoughts—or what psychologists call metacognition. Ask yourself, “Why am I thinking that?” Capture those thoughts and make them obedient to Christ. Don’t let your worrisome thoughts rob you of God’s shalom.

Join me this Sunday as we take a closer look at the “shalom cycle,” including the things that can derail it. 

Favorite 2016 Posts

A Brief Bio Of Smith Wigglesworth

WigglesworthTo say that Smith Wigglesworth was a unique minister of the Gospel is an understatement! I doubt that you can find anyone else in history quite like Wigglesworth, but what an amazing example he left for us of someone totally sold-out to God!

This video biography by Roberts Liardon is a fairly accurate picture of this great man’s life. You can also get to know Smith Wigglesworth by reading his sermons. I have posted several reviews of books which contain his sermons, as well as extensive quotes from his those sermons:

Enjoy this video—

Links & Quotes

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“Never live on memories. Do not remember in your testimony what you once were; let the Word of God be always living and active in you, and give the best you have every time and all the time.” —Oswald Chambers

“A man may lose the good things of this life against his will; but if he loses the eternal blessings, he does so with his own consent.” —Augustine

GOOD NEWS: Abortions have dropped 12% across the country.

Today would have been Smith Wigglesworth’s 156th birthday. Relevant Magazine has a list of some of his quotes. If you would like to read some of the quotes I have posted from Wigglesworth’s books, click here or here.

Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincoln are two of my favorite historical leaders. Here’s a great post: Churchill, Lincoln And The Fragility Of Freedom.

Ronald Reagan is another one of my favorites. Check out 4 Liberal Myths About Ronald Reagan Debunked.

Links & Quotes

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I get really tired of the arguments from people questioning the validity of the Bible. Most of the arguments have been debunked a long time ago, and are simply repeated ad nauseum. Here is a great post from a New Testament scholar taking apart these arguments.

Almost as bad as the arguments against the validity of Scripture are the arguments for socialized medicine. Here are 5 reasons why Obamacare should be completely repealed.

Parents, you should be aware of some security issues for your kids on Instagram.

“You will do more in one year if you are really filled with the Holy Ghost than you could do in 50 years apart from Him.” ―Smith Wigglesworth

“Do not even such things as are most bitter to the flesh, tend to awaken Christians to faith and prayer, to a sight of the emptiness of this world, and the fadingness of the best it yield? … How then can we be offended at things by which we reap so much good?” ―John Bunyan

“Pride, on the other hand, is the mother of all sins, and the original sin of lucifer … an instrument strung but preferring to play itself because it thinks it knows the tune better than the Musician.” ―C.S. Lewis

“The assurance that prayer is heard is the earnest that prayer will be answered. The petition is accepted, though no answer has yet been received. Well, we can leave it there. … God never is before His time; nor is He ever too late; He comes just when He is needed.” —Charles Spurgeon

StewardshipNew outfit

 

 

Book Reviews From 2014

4 Quotes About Witnessing Empowerment

AuthenticityThese are the quotes I shared in my message this morning as we wrapped up our series on Pentecost Power. Any of the emphasis in the quotes is mine.

“The strength of the church is not the strength of its institutions but the authenticity of its witness.” —Leonard Sweet & Frank Viola

“The Pentecostal believer is to be something, not just experience something. He or she must become a living witness of Christ on earth.” —Charles Crabtree

“Your very presence should bring such a witness of the Spirit that everyone with whom you come in contact would know that you are a sent one, a light in the world, a manifestation of the Christ, and last of all, a biblical Christian.” —Smith Wigglesworth

“If I may be baptized with the Holy Spirit, I must be. If I am baptized with the Holy Spirit then will souls be saved through my instrumentality who are not so saved if I am not so baptized. If then I am not willing to pay the price of this baptism, and therefore am not so baptized, I am responsible before God for all the souls that might have been saved but were not saved through me because I was not baptized with the Holy Spirit. … There is nothing more deadly than the Gospel without the Spirit’s power. ‘The letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.’ It is awfully solemn business [witnessing] either from the pulpit or in quieter ways. It means death or life to those who hear, and whether it means death or life depends very largely on whether we do so without or with the baptism with the Holy Spirit. We must be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” —R.A. Torrey

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