PEACE IN TROUBLED TIMES 4/14/2024 - Sunday Evening Service


Sunday Evening Service April 14, 2024, the Year of Our Lord

Pastor Carolyn Sissom



When the Lord revealed His glory to the prophet Habakkuk, his response was, “I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble.”


Habakkuk lived in a day of trouble.  Desperately needing real answers, he cried out for help to the Lord Jehovah.  The Word still lives today with the same life-giving power as it did when the prophet spoke and wrote.  The words and vision revealed to the prophet continues to speak with the same power.  


My faith in the written Word is that it is not a history lesson, but alive and quickened with power by the Holy Spirit.  The Angels of God perform the spoken Word of God on behalf of the saints.    


The Book of Habakkuk reveals the prophet’s struggle to “embrace” the ways of God.  Habakkuk first asks, “how long” and “why” God will allow violence to go unchecked in His nation and among His people.  The answer is given that God is raising up the Babylonians to deal with this problem.  This brings even greater perplexity for the prophet cannot understand the righteousness of punishing the sinful nation of Judah by means of a more sinful nation. 


After praying and receiving fresh vision, Habakkuk finally “embraces” the justice of God’s ways by unreservedly “embracing” God Himself.  From this revelation flows his prophetic psalm of faith and confidence in God.


In January 2009, I preached a message out of Habakkuk.   In there, I saw coming upon the earth escalation of same sex marriage, lawlessness, and unrighteous judges, shedding of innocent blood, immorality, and persecution of Christians.


Quote from Kelly Varner in his book, Rest in the Day of Trouble (1993): " the book of Habakkuk is a word from the Lord to America.  Even though its message is a warning, it is nevertheless filled with the promise of hope and comfort…America and the Church are in troubled times."

 I am not troubled because I know that I know that the Lord of Heaven and Earth is sovereign and He is omnipresent, omniscient, and omnipotent. I know he knows my coming in and going out.  He knows how many hairs are on my head and how many shoes are in my closet.


Through Jesus Christ, we experience the God given grace of the peace of God and rest in the day of trouble. We are a nation that votes for its own judgment, choosing money over morals.  The people of our nation are hurting.   Economic disaster, rampant immorality, and lawless violence in our streets ravage the land. We have been invaded through unprotected borders.  Israel is under attack on all sides as we watch Psalm 83 unfolding prophetically.


As it is in America today, in Habakkuk’s day (Hab. 1:1-4), the law was “slacked,” literally “chilled.”  It had been rendered ineffective, paralyzed.  It had come to be looked upon as being without force or authority.  Because of unrighteous judges, true law and justice had been set at nought.  Most forms of judgment were corrupted; hence life and property were insecure.  The wicked were hemming in the righteous.  Miscarriage of justice was the order of the day.  Ensnaring the God-fearing by fraud, the ungodly perverted all that was right and honest.  Because Jehovah did not punish their sins immediately, men thought they could continue to sin with impunity.


  Out of that history comes the cry of a weary man of God.  Like Habakkuk of old, we are all crying, “How long?” and “When?”


The prophet resorted to prayer and received a vision from the Lord.  What did he see? How does it relate to us today:


 "Habakkuk’s sob became a song."


As spoken by Isaiah, we have the message of good news of peace and salvation, the news that the God of Israel reigns.  The answer people are desperately seeking for family, children, business, finances, and the local church as well as emotional well-being was discovered by Habakkuk and all great men and women of faith who continue to cry out to the Lord.


Hab. 2:4: Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him; but the just shall live by his faith.


Is. 26:3: You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.

I believe the greatest gifts the Lord Jesus Christ gives to the Ecclesia beyond our salvation and redemption is the grace of peace and the gift of faith.  If I could give peace as a gift to all my friends and family, it would be their greatest blessing with the exception of our salvation and righteousness through the power of the Blood.  It is the Holy Spirit who imparts to us the gift of Faith. 

1 John 5:4:  Whatever is born of God overcomes the world.  This is the victory that has overcome the word --- our faith.

In the realm of the Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy.  In this realm is happiness, joy unspeakable and full of glory.  We can live there in the Spirit regardless of the circumstances of our life and chaos in the world/kosmos that leaves God out of its reckoning.   It is the realm of thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Col. 3:15: Let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which you are called in one body, and be thankful.

Phil 4:7: The peace of God which passes all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 

 peace of God that passes all understanding,” is the supernatural impartation of God’s peace residing in us.  

Many years ago, I received a visitation of an angel of peace.  I was praying in my home over the household and family finances.  Suddenly from behind me, a blanket of peace fell on my shoulders.  An angel of peace placed a supernatural mantle of peace on my life.  I have never walked out of that peace.  I am convinced and angel of peace walks with me.  In the same way, I have discovered that realm in the Spirit of the “rest of God.” Once we know our way into the “rest of God,” no matter what life throws at us, we will always know our way to that place in Christ.  

Through these turbulent and tumultuous days when God’s judgment is running down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream, let us hold our peace.  Let us live, move and have our being in that realm of Heavenly peace, enter God’s rest, and not be moved. 

Paul and the other apostles were preaching the Kingdom of God in the midst of great persecution and tribulation.  The evil and violent Roman empire was ruling most of the known world.  But, in the midst of evil government, He was able to walk in the realm of Heaven’s peace and release it to us through His epistles.

When evil men rule a nation, they have no understanding of justice or judgment.  Therefore, under their rule, there is chaos.


Proverbs 28: 4-5: …  Evil men do not understand judgment.  They that seek the Lord understand all things.


 Jesus’ righteousness separates that which is evil from that which is righteous.  That which is evil will burn as chaff and that which is righteous will remain as pure gold.


In the presence of the Lord, we consider the beams in our own eyes.  This is a circumcised heart.  Those who have judged themselves, will always be able to extend grace and mercy to the Body of Christ.  They will not and cannot flow in the Spirit of God in condemnation.  There is therefore now, no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”


We are always measured by our own measurement. 


Those who have faith to move forward in Christ will survive the present judgments of the ungodly.  A holy seed will survive.   The righteous judgment of Christ ---in his people are vessels which will produce righteousness in the earth and thus peace.  From this judgment will come forth the New Wine which will simultaneously release revival in the earth. 



Mic 7:9: I will bear the indignation of the Lord, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause, and execute judgment for me; he will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold his righteousness.


Jesus’ visitation of Righteousness, will simultaneously bring forth the judgment that will bring His followers into the Peace of the Lord as we go forward.  This is harmony, rest, quietness, reconciled, contentment.  It is a fruit of the Holy Spirit and an aspect of God’s nature.  It means the end of struggle, doubt, fear, and uncertainty.


1 Co. 1:3: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.


In the time of global shaking and the distress of nations, God’s people need not wring their hands, sweating and fretting.   What are we to do?  The clear answer from God’s infallible Words speaks for itself.


1 Cor. 15:58:  Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm.  Let nothing move you.  Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.


 Philippians 4:7; 9: The peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ JesusThose things, which you have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do; and the God of peace shall be with you.


The peace of God shall keep you!


The God of peace shall be with you!


The peace of God is only part of the blessing unless we have the God of that peace resident in us. 


A carnal heart could be satisfied if he might have outward peace, (drama and pressure free life).  Peace can be a place like living alone in a cabin on a mountain surrounded by snow with no one but solitude with God.    For the godly heart, outward peace is not enough.  I must have the peace of God.  Will that not quiet my soul?  No, I must have the God of peace.



The Holy Spirit fills our heart with Christ Jesus and therein dwells the fullness of peace.  Isaiah prophesied of the glorious treasures of the Kingdom through the coming Messiah.


Most of all King Jesus is the source of unwavering peace (Eph. 2:14)!  Haggai speaks to our generation concerning the restoration of God’s house and the glorious One who lives there.   Zion, the Kingdom of God, will never be moved (Ps. 125: 1-2).  It is the habitation of God, the place of unshakeable peace and unbroken covenant.


Unshakeable peace and Unbreakable relationships are a product of unbroken covenant, and undivided heart. 


Ps. 119:165 Great peace have they who love Your law, and nothing can make them stumble.


The church must step up and walk in our full provision and come forth in this hour with the Lord of Hosts of the armies of Heaven and take our authority over the political spirits and religious spirits that have been sent to intimidate this supernatural empowerment of the Bride of Christ. 


Heb. 3:14-15: We are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end;


Perseverance is indeed the proof of faith.  The Christian’s life is a walk of faith.  The Cross is our starting point.  Along the journey are rich rewards.  We become heirs as deliverers, mediators, and reconcilers. 


In many hidden places around the world an immeasurable company is being trained in the school of the Spirit.  The nature of Christ is being woven into the fabric of their beings.


Heb. 4: 1: Let us therefore fear, less, a promise being left us of entering into His rest any of you should seem to come short of it.


 The writer is bringing us face to face with the truth that believers can be guilty of unbelief.  Unbelief kept the Israelis out of the Promised Land (a type of God’s rest); it can also keep Christians from inheriting the Lord’s promised rest (The Kingdom of God on earth as it is in Heaven).


Inasmuch as our writer says that the promise of God’s rest still holds good.  It obviously was neither fulfilled nor exhausted by those Israelis who finally enter the land. 


The hard truth is that few of us come close to trusting God for all He has blessed us with through obedience to His Will, Word, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ who secured God’s promises for us.


  We know that faith is the opposite of fear.  The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psa. 111:10).  This is a reverential fear of the Lord.  It is a fear based on respect.  Our faith believes He is Lord of Heaven and earth.  Our faith believes that we walk in his love, blessing and mercy.


Hebrews 4:3: For we which have believed do enter into rest, as He said, As I have sworn in My wrath if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 


The writer is quoting Psalm 95:11 and compares it with Genesis 2:2.  God’s rest is spiritual rather than physical.  The Genesis account says that God began His rest after He had finished His physical work, the six days of creation.  On the 7th day God began a rest that hasn’t ended or been interrupted.  He invited His creation to enter that rest with Him.     


We can have the faith to be saved.  We must also have the faith to enter His rest which is only found in the realm of His spiritual Kingdom.  This rest can only be received through the Holy Spirit.   This rest will produce the fruit in our lives of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.  We will no longer labor, fret, worry, be afraid of our circumstances, or the world system that leaves God out of its reckoning.  That does not mean that we will stop performing our physical duties of working to earn a living for our family, keep up our homes, and take care of our physical bodies and of those who are dependent on us.


 I am at peace with creation, my fellowman, and more importantly with the Lord.


Out of the issues of the heart, the mouth speaks (Prov. 4:23).  The heart is the mind, will and emotions, our soul.  If we have a healthy soul, then we will have no issues of life.


This Peace and joy are the song of the redeemed as we join with the song of creation in perfect harmony with our Creator.  It is the Song of the Lord and of all creation standing before His throne.  It is the Song of that great cloud of witnesses who join their song with us in worship of the One who has filled us with Himself that we may become one with His Body and the Godhead.  That we may enter into His rest with Him.


It is Habakkuk’s sob which became a song.


Hab. 3:17-19:


Though the fig tree may not blossom; nor fruit be on the vines; Though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; though the flock may be cut off from the fold; and there be no herd in the stalls – Yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will joy in the God of my salvation.  The LORD God is my strength.  He will make my feet like deer’s feet.  He will make me walk on my high hills.    


How big is the Father’s plan of restoration?  The parameter of unshakeable peace is the whole earth.  All creation and every area of our lives will be impacted and leavened by His Spirit.  Heaven and earth will yield up a Kingdom that cannot be moved (Heb. 12: 25-29).  What does the Creator want from His creation?  The purity of unshakeable peace in the whole heart given to the Lord in pure worship.


“My Time in Heaven” by: Richard Sigmund:  "The third most beautiful and glorious place in Heaven is a glory cloud of the peace of God. It was the peace of His presence which surpassed all understanding. The first most glorious place he saw was God's Throne; the second, and equal to it was the Lord Jesus. The third was the fountain of all peace."

Col. 3:15: Let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which you are called in one body, and be thankful.

In God’s peace is unbroken relationships and unbroken covenant.  Yes, people may break relationship with us, but if we are living in God’s peace, we will never break our love relationship with them.

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries Church, 10115 West Hidden Lakes Lane, Richmond, TX. 

Scripture from K.J.V., N.K.J.V. and N.A.S.  I entered into the labors of – C. S. Lovett’s Lights on Hebrews; F. F. Bruce Bible Commentary; Rest In the Day of Trouble and Unshakeable Peace by: Kelly Varner.  Comments and conclusions are my own and not meant to reflect the views of those from whom I entered into their labors – see Bible Study notes on; Hebrews Chapters 3 and 4.  By: Pastor Carolyn Sissom 

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