There is a little town that I adore approximately 30 minutes from where we live. From the minute you get off of interstate, you feel the quaintness. The roads are lined with trees and greenery. The homes are picturesque. There is a library that is buzzing with kids and families…and even the buzz is peaceful. There is something so refreshing about seeing an actual library still being used. There are brick sidewalks and mountain views and the air seems to be exceptionally clean. Restaurant choices are few though nothing seems to be missing. The pizza and barbeque are to die for and you are just missing the prize if you fail to stop at the juice bar or homemade ice cream joints. Tasty!
The town creates a feeling in me each time I pull in. A feeling of peace. An abundant feeling of peace. I find myself smiling more and breathing deeper. I am focused and in a state of mind where I am soaking everything in rather than being my normal, distracted self. When I was there last week I found myself saying, “This. This right here is how I want to feel ALL the time. I am feeling ALL THE FEELS right about now.” There was only one problem. Five hours later it was time to go home.
I started to think about how fleeting peace can be. I believe there were two lessons here for me. Firstly, while there are some things that are circumstantial and are unable to be changed, I have the freedom to create an environment of peace in my days. I have the power to create more space. There are many things I can eliminate from my world that will contribute to a peaceful state of mind. This may mean eliminating a toxic relationship, worry, clutter, or any other number of things that threaten to steal my peace. And those are things I have some control over. The problem with that is, these are only temporary fixes as well. There are always going to be relationships that ebb and flow and there will always come a time where a new worry presents itself. So I am still missing the boat.
True, lasting, wholesome peace can only come from Christ. Staying rooted in Him. Remaining in Him. Walking each step with Him. Surrendering to Him. Letting Him lead every step of the way with an outreached hand.
Psalm 29:11, “The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.” (NIV)
Isaiah 26:3, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.” (NIV)
Isaiah 54:10, “Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
So friends, while there are plenty of things in this world that will threaten your temporary peace, the peace of Christ is solid and steady and unchanging. Let it permeate your souls until it takes up permanent residence and an escape to a quaint little town isn’t necessary for peace to be found.