It is not always easy to feel peaceful.

There are situations, circumstances, people in life that cause emotional turmoil. But Philippians speaks of a “peace of God, which surpasses all understanding.” (Philippians 4:7)

The Greek word translated “understanding” is nous. Nous is most commonly translated as “mind.” Paul is speaking here of a peace that “surpasses” the human mind; it is a peace that cannot be comprehended by rational means.

But nous is bigger than mind. Nous includes the faculties of thinking, perceiving, understanding, feeling, judging, and calculating. Philippians is pointing to a peace that is known in a dimension deeper than all those faculties we are accustomed to using to navigating through life.

It is here in a realm of the human spirit deeper than emotion or thinking that we discover a peace that “will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)

Until I find my way to this deeper realm, I will live as the victim of the external world. I will never experience the peace that “surpasses” the nous until I find my way to that place within myself that lives independently of everything. This is the only effective path to peace. Peace in the world will only come as we find this transcendent peace within ourselves.

How do I open to this realm within myself that transcends thought and feeling?

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