Sitting at our favorite secluded nature spot (as secluded as one can get in a booming suburban area!), watching ducks glide noiselessly across sparkling water and feeling a gentle breeze blow across my face, my soul drinks in the splendor of a profusion of green around me. Trees, grass, vines, and bushes join together in a silent, joyous symphony. I exult in the still peacefulness of it and inwardly join their chorus. I heed their call to be still, to listen, and to simply and deeply breathe peace.
Oh yes, I left things undone at home to come here. It was a choice. My lengthy to-do list waits, a sinkful of dishes waits, along with a host of other items clamoring for attention. But today it strikes me that peace is worth more than check marks on paper, and I could use a refill. Would it have fed my soul to scrub pots? Well…perhaps, if I scrubbed them in gratitude for the abundant provision they contained, heart uplifted to the Giver of all good things. But at times to “seek peace and pursue it” (Ps. 34:14), I must remove myself from the tyranny of schedule and bring myself and my children to this sacred altar where we offer up our busyness as a sacrifice and receive in return beautiful quietness of soul.
After all, everything else will be waiting for me when I return home, but I will return different – better – for having come. And when life presses in, as it invariably does, I will be better prepared to face it. Peace will do that for a person. Life’s reversals – they don’t tend to give us 6 weeks written notice. From one moment to the next, everything can change. But circumstances are outside my being. I choose what goes on in my soul. I choose to take times like this to quiet myself and reconnect with the foundational values that make me who I am.
Faith, most of all. Family, dearly loved. Friends who have been ministering angels time and time again. That’s one of the best gifts peace offers its takers – time and inner space to lift our focus and be thankful.
Peace – could you use a refill today too? I doubt we’ll find it in the nightly news, the perpetual chatter of social media, or the relentless pursuit of materialism.
But when you and I choose to sit at the feet of the Prince of Peace and learn from Him, we become more like Him. Slowly – little by little – the work of a lifetime…however long we have, starting today.
How much peace do we want? A thimbleful? A trickling stream? Or a broad, deep, powerful river – strong enough to buoy us up even over the rapids, and safe enough for the smallest child? The One who IS peace has enough for you. All it takes is an open heart – your empty vessel to receive. Maybe today you would like to find a quiet place to offer up your heart to Him for a peace refill – I, for one, am so glad I did.
Coffee and cookies photo: Photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/fiery-phoenix/8345691281/”>Fiery-Phoenix</a> via <a href=”https://visualhunt.com”>VisualHunt.com</a> / <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”> CC BY-NC-ND</a>