Seeking inner peace

One of the blessings of the gospel is to be able to find inner peace, even if conditions around us are chaotic.

In many parts of the world today there is little peace, and to keep warring factions apart, the world looks toward peacekeepers to maintain some sense of order in troubled areas. But more than peacekeepers, what is needed in the world are peacemakers.Peacekeeping is the preserving of peace, even though such peace may be fragile. Peacekeeping could be among nations, communities or even peoples. In peacekeeping, there is little effort to get to the root causes of problems. Peacemaking, on the other hand, suggests an active role in striving to eliminate those root causes. Peacemakers are not just mediators, they are soothers, leaders. "Blessed are the peacemakers," the Savior said in the Sermon on the Mount, "for they shall be called the children of God." (Matt. 5:9.)

But before we can be a peacemaker, we must first find peace within ourselves.

President Spencer W. Kimball counseled: "Peace is the fruit of righteousness. It cannot be bought with money and cannot be traded nor bartered. It must be earned. The wealthy often spend much of their gains in a bid for peace, only to find that it is not for sale. But the poorest as well as the richest may have it in abundance if the total price is paid. Those who abide the laws and live the Christlike life may have peace and other kindred blessings, principal among which are exaltation and eternal life." (Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 157.)

President Ezra Taft Benson also said concerning peace: "It is a great blessing to have an inner peace, to have an assurance, to have a spirit of serenity and inward calm during times of strife and struggle, during times of sorrow and reverses. It is soul-satisfying to know that God is at the helm, that He is mindful of His children and that we can with full confidence place our trust in Him. I believe that all the truly great men of the earth have been men who trusted in God and who have striven to do that which is right as they understood the right." (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 68.)

Here are some things we can do to achieve that inner peace spoken of by President Kimball and President Benson:

Keep the commandments. There can be no inner peace when we do wrong. Pay tithes and offerings. Deny yourselves of all ungodliness. (Moro. 10:32.) Keep unspotted from the world. (D&C 59:9.) Honor the sabbath. We're promised, "he who does the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come." (D&C 59:23.)

Pray. Commune with Heavenly Father. We should express to Him our thanks and our needs. He who knows us best will not let us down. There is power in prayer. That which is spoken in humility puts us in touch with the powers of heaven and those powers can bless our lives in many ways.

Read the scriptures regularly. Take time to ponder the writings of the prophets. In the scriptures are powerful messages that have as much meaning for us today as they did when they were first recorded. The scriptures give context to our lives and offer us an eternal perspective on our everyday problems.

Make time for meditation and gospel study on days other than the Sabbath. President Brigham Young said that the other six days in the week "must be spent to the glory of God, as much as Sunday, or we shall come short of the object of our pursuit." (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 166.)

Attend the temple as often as possible. Participation in saving ordinances does wonders for a flagging spirit.

Curb our tongue. President Young had this to say: "Let us speak words of comfort and consolation. When you are influenced by the Spirit of holiness and purity, let your light shine; but if you are tried and tempted and buffeted by Satan, keep your thoughts to yourselves - keep your mouths closed; for speaking produces fruit, either of a good or evil character." (Discourses, p. 166.)

Exercise regularly. Physical wellness is a big part of spiritual strength, and vice versa.

Assist others in their effort to achieve inner peace. Once we have achieved ways to gain peace within ourselves, it behooves us to help others. We should not become so selfish in our own search for tranquility that we ignore our obligations to others.

"Jesus Christ, who was born in the meridian of time, pointed the way for men and nations to achieve true and lasting peace. He taught that peace comes from within - peace must come to the hearts of men." (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 345.)

Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed