Chapter 19: Peace

Chapter 19: Peace

God has a lot of things to say about peace:

“Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it.” 1 Peter 3:11 ESV

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”  Matthew 5:9 ESV

“A harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.”  James 3:18 ESV

“When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” Proverbs 16:7 ESV

Our peace comes from God:

“Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way.  The Lord be with you all.”  2 Thessalonians 3:16 ESV

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulation.  But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 ESV

“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3 ESV

“In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8 ESV 

And He commands us to walk in HIs peace:

“Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.  For “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit; let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it.”  1 Peter 3:9-11 ESV

“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body.  And be thankful.”  Colossians 3:15 ESV

“So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.”  Romans 14:19 ESV

Peace is a gauge by which we assess our hearts before and within the Lord.  Peace is not something that we impose on others from without, rather, peace is something that flows from the heart of God, through our hearts as we are surrendered to Him, and then out to others.

Yet the peace of the God pouring through our lives is not something that happens automatically. In our flesh-selves we find ourselves striving with each other, demanding of each other, condemning each other. Chaos and strife are our natural bent.

“A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.” Proverbs 16:28 ESV

“But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth.  This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.  For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.”  James 3:14-16 ESV

“For you are still of the flesh.  For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way?” 1 Corinthians 3:3 ESV

As in all things there is a process in becoming men and women of peace.  To be conduits of peace there are a few things that must be accomplished in our own hearts and minds.

1.  First, we come to understand that we do not really know His peace.  We recognize that there is much to learn about the peace of God and we admit our need and confess the lack of peace in our own hearts and minds.  We allow the revelation of the Lord to show us our jealousies and to highlight our contentions and then we confess these things to God.  Bringing our lack of peace out into the light makes a space by which God’s peace can begin to change and inhabit our lives.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 ESV

2.  Second, we must bring our ego needs to the Lord.  Where we are insecure we must rest in God and what He declares about us.  We do not take our sense of self from our outward lives, but rather we settle into self that is settled in the Lord.  We come to Him and He wraps us in His peace.

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” Isaiah 41:10 ESV

In this, we loose off our demanding of others.  The way of peace is the way of walking in forgiveness and understanding.

  • Are we contentious in our spirits? We need the peace of the Lord.
  • Are we unsettled in joy and faith? We need the peace of the Lord.
  • Are we unwilling to set things right with others? We need the peace of the Lord

“For the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” James 1:20 ESV

Peace is powerful and active.  Sometimes we believe peace is passive and lays down at the first hint of trouble.  But peace is far more than just refusing to engage chaos or give voice to dissension, peace is the heart of our Father God and when our hearts are transformed by his peace, our hearts become a conduit of His peace.

Out of this work of the Lord in our own lives, peace flows out of our person to others around us.  And when we walk in the peace of the Lord the darkness around us must submit to this spirit of peace carried in the love of the Lord.  Peace enters in the kingdom of God just as light illuminates a dark room.

Where there are spirits of chaos and destruction, we ignore the spirits of the enemy and instead we pray peace, “God we declare your peace in this place.” Rather than focussing on evil, we focus on God.  Instead of going after the enemy, we bring God himself.  In this way God’s ways take preeminence – peace does this.

“God, we say yes and amen to your peace over this community.”

“Jesus, we agree with your peace this day over this home.”

“Holy Spirit, bring your peace to our hearts and minds.”

“God, we enter into your peace.”

The enemy cannot stand against peace, for peace is the exact opposite of the nature of the enemy, peace is wholly the nature of God.  Most particularly, our own sin nature loses it’s power when brought into the peace of God.

 “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24 ESV

“Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved, for you are my praise.”  Jeremiah 17:14 ESV

“Creating the fruit of the lips. Peace, peace, to the far and to the near,” says the Lord, “and I will heal him.” Isaiah 57:19  ESV

Where the enemy seeks to destroy, peace seeks to heal.  Where our hearts wish to condemn, peace forgives.  Where communities are embroiled in dissension, peace brings a balm of the Lord and tensions ease and life increases.

The peace of God changes our lives, transforming our communities.  The peace of the Lord begins in our own hearts and spreads from there.  May we become people of peace.  And as we do this may we enter in the Kingdom of God on earth.

“Praise the Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and a song of praise is fitting.   The Lord builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the outcasts of Israel.  He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names.  Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure.”  Psalm 147:1-5 ESV (read all of Psalm 147:1-20) 

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,”  Psalm 103:2-4  ESV


I want you to try an experiment:  For one month’s time I want you to stop praying against or mentioning Satan.  Instead, I want you to:

  1. Pray peace
  2. Be the light of Christ 

Here is how you pray peace: 

“God, we lift ourselves, this home, this place, this village (a person even, whatever needs the peace of the Lord) to you.  I declare your peace over them today.  I pour your peace into this place today. In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ we say, “Peace be upon us.” Amen.” 

Here is how you can be the light of Christ: 

At the end of the book of Matthew we read Jesus last instructions to his disciples, 

“ Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Teach these new disciples to obey all the command I have given you.  And be sure of this, I am with you always and even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:19-20 NLT 

Some time back I was reading this verse and I noted that Jesus tells us to obey the commands he has given us.  And I had to think, ‘What are the commands that Jesus gave?’ 

So, I went through Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7 and made note of the general instructions that he gave.  Here is what I came up with: 

  1. Know your heart poverty and need for Christ (5:3)
  2. Make sure to mourn when needed (5:4)
  3. Walk in humility (5:5)
  4. Be and do justice for others (5:6)
  5. Be merciful (5:7)
  6. Open your heart for the Lord’s purity (5:18)
  7. Go after peace in all things (5:9)
  8. Don’t concern yourself if you are persecuted (5:10)
  9. Thank God for your persecution (5:11-12)
  10. Be wise as you interact with the world (5:13)
  11. and be a healer and be holiness for those in the world (5:13)
  12. Be light, do not shrink back from influence (5:15)
  13. Do good deeds for others (5:16)
  14. Be aware of the nature of sin (5:17-20)
  15. Refuse to curse others in any form (5:22)
  16. Reconcile with people before coming to church service (5:23-24)
  17. Be serious about sins of the heart (5:27-30)
  18. Take sexual unity seriously, not flippantly (5:31-32)
  19. Do not make vows, just say yes or no (5:33-37)
  20. Be generous without retribution, hatred, being exacting or stingy (5:38-42)
  21. Overcome evil with Sulha, expansive forgiveness (5:43-48) (footnote below)
  22. Don’t make a big deal about your service (6:1-4) 
  23. Pray in secret, with few words, without show (6:5-13)
  24. Forgive everyone (6:14-15)
  25. Fast unto the Lord only (6:16-18)
  26. Do not store up possessions or money on earth (6:19)
  27. Invest in treasures (people) for heaven (6:20)
  28. Take care with what you view (6:22)
  29. Do not make ministry into a business (6:24)
  30. Do not be concerned with your own care and comfort (6:25-34)
  31. Do not be judgmental of others in your spirit (7:1-3)
  32. Attend to your own heart, spirit, and sin (7:4-5)
  33. Be prudent with you share the glory of God (7:6)
  34. Remain in a position of asking and receiving from the Lord (7:7-11)
  35. Be aware of how you treat others (7:12)
  36. Know what is the narrow gate versus the wide gate (7:13-14)
  37. Pay attention to the fruit of people’s lives (7:15-20)
  38. Do the will of God (7:21-23)
  39. Follow these teachings (7:24-27) 

What is interesting of course, is that Jesus did not give any commands about church or crusades, about evangelism or about being pastors or building church buildings.  Rather, he drew our attention to the kind of people we are. 

To bring the light of Christ, to be the light of Christ, we merely live out his teachings. 

I encourage you to keep this list handy.  Refer to it each day.  Let the teachings of Jesus soak deeply into your soul and life.  Focus on him and his ways.  Follow in his foot steps. 

After a time of this, stop and take note of your life.  Have there been changes?  And if so, how has it changed? 

Then, continue on in the strength of the Lord.  Find him as light in your life, then live him out to others. Be blessed in him. 

Summary – peace

God brings us peace.  2 Thessalonians 3:16

We are to walk in the peace of Christ.  Colossians 3:15

We confess our fear and worry.  Isaiah 41:10

We declare peace.  Isaiah 57:19


Footnote:  You will learn more about Sulha later in this course. 

Reports Back from CCIM College Students

I have just been to Uganda where I was able to meet some of our CCIM College Students and hear from them how the course is impacting them. I took a ton of notes as fast as I could manage as they excitedly shared.

Here is some of what they said:

“I learned how to touch the heart of God.”  Justin 

“These classes have enabled us to really know the word of God. We learned the word of God deeper and can now teach the word of God to others. You have equipped us as disciples and we are now able to disciple others.” Antony 

“These lessons have lifted me up in my pastoral work. I have learned through these lessons that we need to prepare (for sermons), that we must not be a person who divides but unites people, providing solutions. I have learned how to disciple others and that when the peace of Christ is extended to our hearts we are strong in him.” Pastor David

“I was a very stubborn man but with the teachings God started changing this — from then I have changed.” John 

“We have been learning that God wants the heart that repents. Humility and obedience to God attracts people to God.” Mary 

“My heart rejoiced when God brought this teaching. It is not a teaching that is segregating or dividing the body of Christ, but is bringing unity.” Owena 


“My wife joined the classes and she said, ‘Come and see’, I found the classes too. I learned about loving my enemy and when I attended I went home in peace and slept well. Another person was at these classes, one who has been my enemy. Now, we are reconciled through these classes, once we were enemies but now we are friends.” Ezekiel 

“Many people are teaching in their own interests but not for the redemption of all humans. CCIM is bringing back people’s attention to look at God’s word critically and very carefully. In today’s world people are serving God like they are in different political parties, claiming to be serving God. CCIM is a blessing and opportunity to bring a transformation on how to serve and read the word of God.” (didn’t get his name)

“The lessons have touched my life. Those days I had a different picture about God. The way I used to take God to be — I knew a man who hated sinners and if there was sin we do not dare to appear before God. Our backgrounds are not very appetizing, many wounds, hearts are scattered beyond repair, and we find the picture of self and the picture that the community has of self not promising of anything good. But actually, God has a different picture of me and I got a different picture of God when I looked at Jesus ministry. To serve I don’t need to be perfect. God sees the broader picture of me and he will get the best out of me.”  Beatrice 

“The CCIM College Course has been a work for me. I became strengthened and took courage – it has done a great work for me. Before I would feel tired and weakened, but after this course, trials come but I would not be touched. I stand strengthened with courage and this course has made me very well and it has helped me greatly, it has also helped me as I counsel others in my church.”  Pastor Christopher 

“CCIM is a Spirit-inspired, practical ministry. This is Biblical ministry which causes our heart’s to set right with God. We are leaders and we must have transformation. Character must be above gifting. Wherever gifting is above character it will be a mess. Theology gives knowledge but does not prepare a person to be equipped in the things of God. Theology does not change the person – we must have practical training that touches the inner man – CCIM training does this. We are not remaining the same.” Pastor Evans 

“I’ve benefitted a lot in how to read the Bible. The Bible is a difficult book to read and I started reading it because I had an exam. I have been caught up reading it and I have received revelations from this study by reading the Bible. I wouldn’t have learned how to read the Bible without this course. I thought to work for God I must be good, blameless but I realized as Paul said, even though as a sinner I acted out of ignorance, and God considers me faithful as I come to him. To serve God I thought I needed much, but I realize that the little I have God can use. The little money, things, faith, is exactly what God wants to use, and I must be faithful with a little.” Benjamin

Amen and amen, we give all the glory to our Lord.

Find out more about the college course HERE

Our Nakedness is Covered by Our Lord

I’ve facilitated dozens of people through hundreds of prayer ministry sessions. Here in the company of each other and the Holy Spirit individuals turn towards the Lord.

Everyone comes with unresolved pain, unrecognized conclusions about life, fears they can’t quite name, anxiety, and more and as I direct and lead them in bringing these kinds of things to the feet of Christ and his cross and into the throne room of God there is never a harsh word spoken. Never.

Time after time, for years now, I suggest, “Ask Jesus what you do with this” And as they take their query to the Lord, always unsure and risking to bare this part of their life to God, the Holy Spirit always replies and directs in warmth, affirmation, compassion. Always.

And burdens are lifted time after time after time after time after time.

The hard work is the turning to God. We all have shame and embarrassments, regrets and disappointments, lies and condemnations playing over in our lives in one degree or another. These are the things that keep us from God.

But not because God is holding these things against us, no, rather it is us who hold these things between us and God.

We have our failures, we have our sin, we have our shame, whatever it may be, and we keep it close to our hearts trying, trying, trying to overcome and solve and fix this thing that just won’t go away.

We orient to our broken lives and turn away from God in our shame. But the thing only gets worse when we do this with cycles of despondency and failure taking hold, increasing our guilt, increasing our fear, increasing our anxiety.

It is only as we realize that we cannot fix this thing or our lives, only when we come to the end of ourselves, that we are convinced to turn toward God, to fix our eyes on Christ, and to open ourselves to his grace in our lives.

For the grace of Christ is a powerful agent of transformation. By it we are changed. Simple as that.

It’s not about our working at things harder. Christ didn’t die for this.

It’s not about our making things right. Most things cannot be made right.

It’s not about our striving, service, sacrifice. You can’t make it happen.

It’s about grace and the power of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hang out with him and you will become a different, more whole, healthy, balanced, wise, content, person.

You will increase in holiness, righteousness, patience, peace, love, just to name a few.

I have personally entered into these intimate conversations with the Lord via prayer ministry well over a hundred times and as I bring my own stuff to the Lord I am changed in my perspective of God simply by how he conducts these conversations.

And then, in the witness to dozens of others encountering the same God again and again and again, I stand as a witness to the gracious manner of the Lord.

God is not out to get you. God is not out to get anyone.

God will not embarrass you. God will not uncover your shame.

In the book of Genesis 9 we find the story of Moses becoming drunk and laying uncovered in his tent. We read that his son Ham saw his nakedness and proceeded to talk about it to others; Ham increased the uncovering of his father.

Then we read that Shem and Japheth took a garment and walking backwards covered over their fathers nakedness; they refused to participate in his uncovering but instead committed themselves to his dignity regardless of his drunken state.

This is exactly how God is with us. THIS IS EXACTLY HOW GOD IS WITH YOU AND I.

God is committed to your dignity regardless of your drunken (fill it in for yourself) state.

I’ve seen it hundreds of times. I’ve experienced it myself hundreds of times.

God covers over our nakedness. He does not expose, humiliate, condemn.

In this we have confidence to come before the throne of grace receiving life afresh.

“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

Amen and amen with all praise to you Lord.

Sweet Relief

We don’t always know what to do with our sin. How do we come transparent to the cross? When indiscretions pile up what do we do with them? In what way might we be loosed off our burdens?

The answers to these questions, the manner by which we find freedom in Christ, is much of the work that we do at Capturing Courage. While we don’t talk about it much, our core is always about authentic relationship with God.

I’ll never forget the pastor in Africa whose heart cried out for repentance. I had met with him the night before and had shared that the Holy Spirit had been reminding me of the importance of repentance and that I intended to bring this to his congregation the next day.

The day had arrived. What I hadn’t expected was that his congregation was all children. So I changed my plans a touch and first shared the story of Moses, speaking to the children how they would one day be leaders in their country and that God’s call comes to the very young also. Our afternoon was then spent in praying over each other, imparting the Lord’s blessings on all that were there.

The close of the day was near and to my side this man came with his notes in hand, and pointing to where he had written ‘repentance’ he implored me, “When are we going to do this?” His deep hunger for repentance and a way out of the guilt and sin and burdens he was carrying touched me deeply.

I’ll never forget that moment. For in his urgency and plea is the cry of all of us. We all need a way through our own deserts. We all require relief from the sacks of coal we have been walking under.

It is not a nice part of the job, bringing people to a knowledge of sin. There is always a knife-thrust in the gut when we recognize the depths of our own stuff, but oh what sweet relief as we heave off our loads at the foot of the cross.

The moments from guilt to freedom takes all of about 30 seconds. It is the honesty and authenticity that takes so long to come to.

Bottom line, invest in honesty before God today. Bring your stuff. Leave off your loads.

Confess (God I did this…)

Repent (I am so sorry…)

Renounce (In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ I say ‘No More!’)

Break (With the strong arm of my Lord Jesus Christ I reach back into my past and I uproot this sin from where it first began to grow. No more today!)

Cancel (In the name of my Lord Jesus Christ I cancel all authority, curses and assignments against me because of this sin. No more today!)

Claim (And by the power of my living Lord Jesus Christ I receive from the good hands of God ________. Thank-you)

Seal (In the name of my Lord Jesus Christ I seal this work today in the love of the Father, the blood of the Son, and the breathe of the Holy Spirit. I give all honor and glory 100% to God today and declare myself covered and kept in the name and the blood of my living Lord Jesus Christ.)

Find your own sweet relief in the cross of Christ today. You won’t ever be the same.