Join us in-person on Sundays at 9 or 10:30 am and online at 10:30 am. Find the Livestream HERE.

Perfect Peace - Refining Trials



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


This past week I listened to a pastor respond to a very difficult question—one that he hears often from people who care deeply for him—“How are you? Tell me how it’s going with your cancer treatment.” How does a person speak of all that comes in battle with a life-threatening disease? Many of you have experienced such illness, or have a loved one who has, and know the experience of trying to respond to this question. I have not lived your experience but can only imagine the myriad of possible responses. Of the many things that could be said about this pastor’s journey, the words he chose were: “I’m not fighting cancer, I’m fighting my sin.” As I considered his response, I thought it to be the impossible answer. Does anyone really think of their sin battle in the midst of their cancer battle? For the many friends and family I’ve had over the years who have fought their own battle with disease, would this come as comforting counsel to them? And yet this pastor, through his journey to find peace in the midst of great suffering, recognized his need to fight the sin of not trusting the sovereign, creator God who had saved him and secured his eternity, but who also promises to be intimately involved in every detail along the way. We would be mishearing if we thought this pastor’s counsel was a call to unwavering perfection in how we respond to suffering. How is that possible when we know that sin still resides within us? We will falter, and when we do, the One who can sustain is there to steady us, even grieve with us.

This pastor’s encouragement is that of the prophet Isaiah. “You [God] keep in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” The Hebrew word translated here as “perfect peace” reflects the outcome of having a mind that is stayed or fixed on God and His trustworthiness. Often translated “peace, peace,” the prophet speaks of a type and depth of peace that is not of this world, but of God. Though we will stumble in Scripture’s call to fix our minds on God, we are reminded that His peace is a perfect peace and that He desires that it be ours. In His grace, God gives to us Himself. We are called to do the hard work of knowing the character and goodness of the infinite God revealed to us in Scripture. For our peace, He invites us to fix our minds on the fullness of who He is—He is trustworthy.


Father give to us a desire and diligence to seek and understand you through your Word. Encourage us to seek a depth and breadth of knowledge of you that informs and fixes our minds on your sufficiency for all of life. Father, for those who are suffering today, draw their hearts and minds to you that you would keep them in perfect peace. Amen.