Jan 14, 2012

Guarded by peace

These days I have been learning (slowly) more of what it means to know the peace of Christ. To know joy because I am His and He is mine and therefore all is ultimately right in my world.

I find myself blessed beyond what I have hoped for or expected in many ways - blessed in that God has been kind in giving me a precious, (although temporary) gift that I had so long hoped for - marriage to a man who loves me deeply, and loves Christ even more. Six months (nearly) into marriage, I am still in awe of this.

But strangely, I've lately found myself feeling much
more prone to anxiety or sadness at things going on around me or in the lives of those I love - perhaps in contrast to the good that God has been showing me in this sweet season of life which has so far been marked with far
more joys than struggles.

My husband reminds me that empathy is a good thing, because it leads us to prayer and love. But in these things, God does not call us to anxiety and fear, which is where I've been at - anxiety over those I care about and circumstances they are in, fear in things that may happen, or even future burdens I may be called to bear.

And in the midst of this good gift God has given me, I've sometimes felt as if I am wanting to guard my earthly happiness as if it is the ultimate thing. To be safe and healthy and happy in the superficial sense, and wanting the same for those I love. Nothing smudging these goals, thank you.

My eyes begin to drift away from what the goal of life really is, and from the eternal glory that awaits us, and I find myself thirsty.

It is difficult to keep a right balance - to enjoy the earthly gifts God provides, but not to prize them highest, or to fasten my grip so tightly on them (or to demand gifts He has not yet given). To set my mind on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. (Colossians 3:2)

To have a quiet heart that rests in the certainty of my God, in the truth that He does all things well. He is good. Nothing escapes His notice. Nothing can happen without His permission. We are (ultimately) safe in His keeping.

Some days I feel like I know so little of living the Christian life...but thankful that I live for a patient, forgiving Lord. When I stop, and pause, and look to Him, He is faithful to remind me of truth and encourage my heart:

"The Lord is at hand, do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus...whatever you have learned and received and heard and seen in me - practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you." (Philippians 4:5-7,9)

(photo credit)

3 comments:

  1. Great stuff, Steph. I struggle also with keeping the peace when it's easier to worry over myself or my family. I love Philippians 4:5-7,9)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love this post, Stephanie - especially when you talk about wanting to guard your earthly happiness, because I've been having to remind myself lately that happiness isn't what this life is about - it's about serving the Lord, and allowing Him to refine us. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Once again, a beautiful post! ;)

    Sadly, at times it can be easy to forget that there is an eternal glory that awaits us, and at times we can become overwhelmed with the cares of this life, anxieties and fears but we must always remember that "...the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." (Romans 8:18)If we remember this truth we will find the strength to "press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:14) and rest in Him.

    ReplyDelete