Each day in November, the Everyday Truth blog is looking at a different name for God and providing a family devotional for you to use with your kids. The goal is to keep our hearts focused on giving thanks to God during the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving.
If I asked you to describe a peaceful evening, what would you say? Give everyone a chance to answer the question. Were your answers the same or different? What did they have in common?
What we each think of as peaceful may differ, but peace is always the absence of conflict and a sense of calm. God is the God of peace. He offers us that peace. Jesus said in John 14:27 "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." God gives us peace even in the most difficult circumstances.
Our peace comes from knowng that God is in control. No matter what happens -- no matter if someone is mean to you at school or someone in your family is sick -- God is in control. Jesus tells us that God's peace means that we don't have to worry about things. We can ask God to help us deal with them, and God will give us peace about those things.
The Bible even gives us specific directions for what to do when we do feel upset, afraid or worried. Philippians 4:6-7 says "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." This verse tells us that if there's something bothering us, we need to take it to God with a thankful heart for all that He has given us. When we turn the tough stuff over to God through prayer, God promises to give us peace. That's a pretty sweet deal, isn't it?
As a family, memorize Philippians 4:6-7 this week. As you go throughout your week remember to pray about anything that is causing you to worry or be anxious. Draw a large peace symbol or the word peace on a piece of paper or posterboard. Hang it where everyone can see it. As you go throughout the week, everyone in your family can write down the things that they have turned over to God on the peace poster. It will serve as a visual reminder of God's promise to give you peace.
On your thankfulness tree leaves today, write down a specific situation when you were thankful that God gave you peace. It could be when you had a disagreement with a friend or even when your pet was sick.
Pray together and thank God for being a God of peace.