Peace be with you! Jesus asks us to receive His peace abundantly and thankfully. When we need peace, we only need to say yes to God's purpose for us.
I am re-posting Sara's thoughts on Peace from September, 2008. Just as with Joy, we need to choose peace...and keep choosing it everyday. :)
Praying your week is filled with His peace.
Peace -- [originally posted 9.25.08]
It does not mean to be in
a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the
midst of those things and still be calm in your heart. ~Anonymous
This quote describes
where I'm at most of the time. Don't get me wrong, other than the rowdiness of
my dog there's not a lot of noise or trouble happening in my house. I'm talking
about the noise in my mind, the trouble in my body and the hard work of keeping
moving despite the effort it takes most days.
It's taken me a lot of
years to get to a place where I can feel accepting of my life as it is and as
it will be. There were so many years of fighting to be who I had imagined I
would be at this point in my life. And the fighting turned out to be more
exhausting than the accepting. It reminds me of a story I heard at church once
about a man who didn't want to die and leave his home and his family. He was
sitting on a beach thinking about his life and holding on so tightly that when
he died, he had in the palm of his hand sand from the beach on Earth.
The man sat outside of
the gates of heaven, but they wouldn't let him inside until he had let go of
all he had been clinging to. But he refused to let go of the sand from the
beach. It was his connection to his life, his family and his loves. One day he
grew weary and decided it was time to move on, so he opened his hands and brushed
away the sand he had been holding.
The moment he did this
simple gesture he found himself on the beach he loved surrounded by everything
he cared about. That was heaven. It was everything he wanted, but before he
could have it he had to let go.
I found that experience
when I let go of trying to be something I used to be. When I let go of my
earthly ideas of who I should be and how I should live, I got everything I
really wanted. I have authentic relationships that are based on real
connections. I am closer to my family. I have opportunities to be creative and
expressive, it just came in a different form than a job. I am loved and
respected and cared for and cared about.
What else is there that I
Now, the reality is that
the noise and trouble creep in all the time. There are moments when I keep the
shades drawn because the sunshine outside is just a reminder that I can't be
outside and a part of it. There are those moments when I see myself in a new
photograph and am startled that I don't see the same face I always knew... it's
a face that's a little swollen and medicated and sick. Sick with a smile, but
sick nonetheless. There are moments of watching people dance and longing for
the days of being carefree.
But that's where the Peace
comes into play. If you read that quote at the top of this post, you notice it
doesn't say that peace in your heart wipes out the noise and the trouble and
the hard work. It just makes them bearable. It makes them the background noise
to everything that's important. And what is important is that God gave me gifts
and I used them. And if I don't have those gifts anymore I believe it's because
He doesn't have a need for me to use them anymore. But that doesn't stop me
from seeing the gifts that remain. The gifts that come from the hard stuff. The
gifts that allow me to have peace in my heart while the noise and trouble and
hard work rumble on.
I got everything I really
wanted, once I let it all go.