Among the many events that have happened during 2016, the most important to some people was the death of the idol they adored; for some it was a singer named Prince, for others it was the death of Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher), and boxing fans had to bid farewell to The Greatest—Muhammad Ali. There was also the death of an author who was less heralded than these whose obituaries were printed in newspapers from the East coast to the West.
While he was well-known in some circles, Jerry Bridges, the author, did not have the notoriety of the Prince and the Princess, but he did know The Greatest One who is greater than any other; and, Bridges had found what proves to be elusive to some—the secret of peace and contentment.
Bridges was a prolific writer who said: “The Bible is full of God’s promises to provide for us spiritually and materially, to never forsake us, to give us peace in times of difficult circumstances, to cause all circumstances to work together for our good, and finally to bring us safely home to glory. Not one of those promises is dependent upon our performance. They are all dependent on the grace of God given to us through Jesus Christ.”
The words of the Princess are a stark contrast to those of Bridges: “I knew better than I knew anything that what happens with stardom, with fame, is it goes away, and it leaves you in a humiliated space (Carrie Fisher 2006).”
Fisher’s assessment on life, reminds me of Solomon’s wisdom: Charm can be deceptive and physical beauty will not last, but a woman who reveres the Lord should be praised above all others. ~Proverbs 31:30
It’s a simple truth that this world offers nothing akin to genuine contentment. Your health and wealth can vanish in a moment; fame is fickle; and the bright lights of Hollywood and Broadway fade away.
“Real contentment,” Warren Wiersbe said, “must come from within. You and I cannot change or control the world around us, but we can change and control the world within us.” The “within” that Wiersbe spoke of is “the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, and will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7).
If you’re restless, and feel as though there is a void in your life, I encourage you to give God’s peace a chance.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. ~Jeremiah 29:11