I think if we were all honest with our heart’s desire, we would say that we desire peace. That may look different to each person but ultimately I think it would describe a feeling of contentment with where we are at in that moment and a trust in what is to come.
How do we attain that? First I should say, I definitely have not arrived there. Of course I have moments of peace and this feeling deep within my soul that my life is amazing and I really am perfectly happy. Then the next moment I may feel like my mind may fly apart with all the things I need to accomplish and the demands on my life.
Life with the 3 small children and a husband is never exactly idyllic, lol. It looks beautiful in the Norman Rockwell paintings and we look longingly at them, thinking that is what ultimate peace and sincerity looks like. We could always feel peaceful if our children and spouses just behaved like they are supposed to in those paintings. But the harsh reality is; they don’t and life’s circumstances are often far off what we pictured. So, should we just scrap the idea of peace, as foolish and unattainable?
But the Bible talks over and over about peace. It says Jesus is peace and he is leaving peace with us. How is that even possible? Paul describes having peace in spite of (not because of ) his circumstances and surroundings. He was in prison much of the time and most likely sick, cold, lonely and hungry but he affirms his contentment in the state he is in.
How do we get that peace even when our children are being kids and are noisy, messy and just a little annoying? How do we get that peace when our spouse royally messes up and does something incredibly stupid, sinful or plain irritating? Where does our peace come from when the baby has been teething for 2 weeks straight and you’re so exhausted you can barely function?
The answer is spelled out pretty simply in the Bible, “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” So there it is in a nutshell. If we can keep our wandering, forgetful, complaining hearts and minds focused on God we will have peace. If not, we’re sunk. We will be condemning ourselves to live a non-abundant life without a peaceful heart and mind. I don’t know about you, but I really want a peace within me. So, I will have to discipline myself to dwell on God and put my trust solely in him. After all, insurance can fail, health can fail, bank accounts can be depleted, jobs can be lost, spouses can leave or die, children can die or turn away from you. But my hope should be in the Lord, the maker of earth and heaven, the same today and forever more!