Dust 5: Peace...

When you go from fighting the alarm in the morning to wishing it was what woke you up, well, things have changed...

PSALM 27:1

“The Lord is my light and salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

When I first heard the song "Peace" by Jennifer Knapp, if I remember correctly, it was in an episode of Dawson's Creek. The simple acoustics and the serene instrumental in the middle of the song were enough to calm whatever nerves, anxiety, or fear I was feeling in that moment. Even today, nearly two decades later, I still listen to it as a means of calming down, especially in those moments where my fear and my anxiety start to get the best of me.

Lately, with thoughts of my future, both personal and professional, I've had several moments of just being overwhelmed by fear. I miss my friends. I'm burdened by debt. I am uncertain how to find the intersection between my vocation and my relationship. Some days, walking down the hallway of the hospital, my breath gets stuck in my chest and I have to move to the side of the hallway for just a moment. At home I'll catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and be surprised by how dark the circles under my eyes have become. Most of the time, I'm able to recover quickly. Other times, it takes longer. I can't always quickly identify who has my back, who is on my side.

Don't be afraid of your fears. They're not there to scare you. They're there to let you know that something is worth it.” ― C. JoyBell C.

And then I come across passages like this one where I am reminded that, at the very least, God has me covered. God has my back. God is the one holding me when the waves around me are verging on a thousand feet, when the winds hit a million miles an hour, when the quakes reach far beyond the scope of the Richter Scale. In the midst of life's changes and losses, the Creator is looking out for me, keeping me safe, making sure I am surrounded by love and support — even when I'm too dumb and stubborn to hear it for what it is. Despite my instinct and desire to run and hide, I'm stuck hearing the truth of my fellow Four, Virginia Woolf: "You cannot find peace by avoiding life." Fear and anxiety are part of the human experience, but so is peace.

I hope that today, in the middle of whatever fears or anxieties try to weigh you down, that you can have a moment (or several) of peace. I hope you find time to catch your breath and be reminded of the simple truth that God has your back, that you are loved.

 

**If you want to follow along with the devotional lectionary I’ll be using for this series, you can find it here via Pittsburgh Theological Seminary**

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photo credit: Moyan Brenn (via Flickr)