I spent most of the day walking through the streets of London yesterday. I did some sightseeing and some shopping. I love going to places and getting a feel for the spiritual atmosphere. I like to take the spiritual temperature of places I visit by looking at people and talking to them. One thing I could see in the parts of London I visited is that there didn’t seem to be much joy. People didn’t look thrilled or excited about life. You could say that it is a worldwide phenomenon but I have been to places where life is celebrated and people have joy and hope. If I compare Dallas to Paris or New York, I can say that there is more joy and more hope in Dallas from what I have noticed.
Living without hope and without joy is a tough way to live. Where would someone with no relationship with the Lord find hope and joy? They could find them in their relationship with family and friends but disappointment will set in at some point and people can only sustain hope and joy for so long. The Lord holds hope and joy in His hands. He has them and He keeps them. He doesn’t lack and He doesn’t run out. If your hope is in the Lord, I strongly encourage you to maintain it in Him. If your joy comes from the Lord, keep drinking from that cup and don’t stop. It is so sad to see that hope and joy are not that common nowadays. Hope and joy in the Lord can uproot any bad and negative plants the enemy keeps trying to plant in your garden of peace. Let God be your gardener and keep watering your garden with His hope and His joy. Before long, your garden of peace will be a stronghold for the fruit of the Spirit and it will be a place of comfort for other people to visit.
What I call our garden of peace is the place we have where we cultivate what the Lord gives us. It is where we can go to find peace, to recharge our batteries and bathe in the sunshine of His love and receive the rain of His blessings. My garden of peace is found in the sphere of my prayers, my praise and worship and my thanksgiving to the Lord. I carry that garden with me wherever I go the more time I spend in it. I get to travel a few times a year and my garden goes with me. If I didn’t have a pretty grown garden, it would be difficult for me to stay grounded when I find myself in places where chaos is thriving and joy is non-existent. Our environment can impact us greatly if we let it in. If we have a strong foundation in the Lord, we can impact our environment through Him. I want my garden of peace to be as blooming and lavish as can be so that it keeps me in the Lord’s peace, in His joy and in His love. The world needs co-gardeners with God who will sow peace and plant joy wherever they go. The world needs co-gardeners with the Lord whose interest is to harvest souls for the Kingdom of God and create a path of love where others can walk and find their way to salvation.
When the Lord is the head of your garden of peace, your garden will withstand any harsh types of weather. Storms won’t be able to destroy it. Drought won’t dry it out and earthquakes won’t be able to displace it. When your hope stays in the Lord and His joy is your strength, no weapon forged against you will prosper. The Lord won’t allow it. Your garden of peace won’t fall for it. You will stand tall and keep going. You will take peaceful strolls in your garden even when your mind is raging war and when the opposition is trying to wreak havoc in your life. Be a co-gardener with the Lord. Let His Spirit show you how to keep hope and joy alive. Pray for more wisdom and knowledge. Pray for direction. Pray to have an even better green thumb so you can take good care of the garden the Lord has bestowed upon you. Pay attention to your levels of hope and joy. Keep them as high as possible. From them run a river of blessings that will not only enrich you but they also bless the lives of people you come in contact with. Keep hope and joy alive. The Lord will help you and His Spirit will guide you. Keep your garden of peace as green as can be with the Lord’s help!
Suggested reading: Psalm 34:10; Proverbs 18:10; Galatians 5:22-23