5 Ways to Be (and Stay) at Peace
Are you at all like me?
Do you get in the car and, immediately,
start running down your list of worries?
Do you try to keep calm
but inevitably lose your cool with that one person?
Do you try to be near to God,
only to get caught up with fear things won't turn out well?
You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast
because they trust in you. Is 26:3
I've got to figure out what it means to be steadfast because one thing I know is that - I want peace.
Lately, I've been moving my two kids in duck-formation; they know by now, they better follow Mama. I am going places. Doing things. Accomplishing stuff. There's order, discipline and diligence in our house. People, best follow in line.
I think it is pretty apparent to all - I'm running my house like a jerk. I'll be the first to admit it.
Wake. Breakfast. Don't spill it on the floor. Get your plate to the sink. Get those clothes on. Why isn't your lunch box in your bag? Can't you get those shoes on yourself. Shuttle. Home. Dinner. Get a book. Hustle kid. Move it. Don't talk back. You are getting time out. Clean that floor. Lights out.
I look like the wicked step mother, my kids look like Cinderella incarnate. I horrify myself.
You will not keep in perfect peace,
those who minds are controlling, obnoxious and abhorrent
because they trust only in themselves. Kelly 1:1
You all, I am not God, but I am a woman who knows the opposite of Isaiah 26:3 and it is what I wrote above.
I feel convicted.
Truly, to only see my way is to miss God's.
To be demanding is to raise the flag of pride.
To bark marching orders is to lose pleasure in Him.
But, to release a mind into the fullness of his Word, leading, promptings and character - is dig up perfect peace.
I feel released.
Able to see more clearly, I realize: She who stays in peace is she who dwells on Him, who is Peace.
On the other hand, she who stays in worry and anxiety is she who settles for fakes. She's like a girl who walks down the streets in New York City and grabs imitation handbags when she has wads of cash in her pocket. She's the rich girl, the one with everything, who picks up and studies 5th rate Chinese Chanel bags because she thinks she doesn't have enough. She forgets she is rich, so she settles. She suffers. She buys up stress instead of the real deal - God's peace.
I buy up stress instead of staying steadfast and certain in God. Do you?
Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love." Jonah 2:8
I don't know about you, but I often rely on vain idols:
The Facebook F: Here, I focus in on a girl's clothes, and completely forget about my devotional time.
The Pinterest P: With this idol, I figure my friends will judge me based on napkins and centerpieces. I try to be perfect.
A mirror: I stare at it and criticize myself.
My bank account: I think it will protect me more than God.
The prized possession of steadfast peace is lost
when a girl bends down to grab lower shelf goods and gods.
What are you reaching for?
Let me remind you, steadfast love always sits high and mighty.
To identify it from fakes, it looks like this:
In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us
and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins." 1 John 4:9-10
Steadfast love looks not like a crazed girl on an elliptical trying, sweating and endlessly pumping - but a gal just being, just sitting, in Christ's love. It is one open, ready and willing to receive his riches. One who lets God determine her value.
What does this practically look like?
It looks like:
Seeing devotional time as sitting time,
not striving time, with God.
Viewing success as Godly-connection
rather than always-perfection.
Letting go of the psychotic pace to
continually dwell in God's grace.
Quieting your inner-hater,
to find the Always-Lover.
Relaxing with God in the moment,
rather than demanding he reconstruct your future.
Remembering all Jesus did,
not what you need to accomplish.
To be stead-fast is to walk steady in the idea you will not move fast.
It is to walk steady at God's pace - moving only with him.
So, today, rather than rushing, huffing and puffing - and blowing our house down, this truth we can cling to. We don't have to push ahead. We don't have to yell and scream and feel anxious that people are going to mess up. We only need to slow down, grab his hand and trust, He will carry us through- straight up to perfect peace.