“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give.” Jesus (John 14:27)
If I could name my desire – really name what my soul longs for – it would be peace.
Peace for me portrays a lovely countenance of tranquility, wholeness, calmness, a quiet spirit, inner stability and rest that resonates deeply with my soul.
But peace encompasses so much more than my idea of lack of chaos, conflict or unsettledness.
Peace is an attitude. A lifestyle. A journey. A place. A Person.
I grew up the middle child of divorced parents, with a people pleasing, peacemaker nature knitted into the fabric of my being. Conflict stresses me to the core and peace at any cost is my go to for coping. But that isn’t true peace.
I know first-hand, peace isn’t obtained in people pleasing, perfectionism, and saying “yes” to everything. And it’s certainly not found in busyness or rushing, something I’m prone to do. They simply cannot co-exist. Believe me, I’ve tried!
I’ve come to know true peace is the Person of Jesus invited into our life and our circumstances and our stories.
And so I must ask myself:
- Do I want the thought of peace or the Source of Peace? How desperate am I for the Presence of Jesus?
- Am I willing to put aside the things that feed my energy and efforts in order to enter into His calm?
- Am I prepared to create space for the Quieter of my soul?
It is in the quiet moments of pulling away from busyness and distractions that we can be filled with the Peace of Christ that passes all understanding. It is hard to fill a moving vessel. Peace is the priceless fruit produced as we rest and remain in relationship with Christ.
And I realize the longing in my soul is really a desire for more of Jesus. Only then can peace begin with me.
Here’s my top 10 list for producing the fruit of peace:
- Make space for God every day. Find a calm place and breathe in slowly as you invite the Presence of God into your day.
- Pray and meditate.
- Practice silence and solitude (pulling away) for a few minutes each day. Alone time lets you examine how you are feeling and what needs attention.
- Take mini retreats that nurture your soul. Even a 20-minute bubble bath counts!
- Slow down the pace – physically and emotionally.
- Be your unique self and live what is true for you. Make time to do what you love and are created to do. Be obedient to that call on your life.
- Love others as Christ loves us and forgive freely. There is freedom in forgiveness. Peace rules the soul when Christ rules our hearts.
- Live grateful. Gratitude is a natural peace and joy giver for the soul.
- Enjoy the healing peace found wandering in nature. It was created for our pleasure.
- BE in the moment. Peace is not in yesterday or tomorrow. It is in enjoying and being fully present in the now.
Peace be with you!
Cindy Helton is a native of Southern, California and now lives in Franklin, TN near her grown kids and grandbabies. She delights in exploring and photographing the beautiful scenery of Tennessee, traveling, writing, and especially being Grammy.
Cindy’s passion is helping others create space to hear the whispers of God and noticing “God moments” in the ordinary of life. She hosts “Soul Sanctuary” mini retreats designed to nurture the soul.