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What is it?
How do we get it?
Why does it seem to flee so quickly once we think we have finally achieved it?
It is defined as quiet or tranquility.
It is also used as a greeting, or a command!
Everyone strives for it!
Peace, in this world, is often short lived.
It seems that just before entering into a teaching appointment with a Restore Retreat, God must lead me down the lane of learning, trusting, and discovering. I use the word lane for this purpose, for it is a narrow road. Not much room to deviate. His boundaries are tight for this hard-headed determined gal, who seems to plow through and often looses sight of important issues like resting and refreshing my soul AND mind. I find it amusing that God has chosen me to help women like you to learn the importance of soulcare. I totally relate with you! We all need a soulcare retreat! Desperately!
I just happened to have one this summer that wasn’t on my agenda and in a place that well…I would have never chosen!
A little warning and wake-up call, I believe from the Lord, landed me in the ER and a night in the hospital for observation. No need for worry. I am fine. Though we think we are Wonder Woman, our bodies are really quite fragile and need much attention. They need rest, quiet, healthy nourishment, less stress and lots of peace! The key to this is knowing how and when to pull away! I am still learning. It doesn’t come natural and I was raised in a productivity environment. Yes, we need to be productive, but we also need rest! It’s okay to veg out every now and then. I implore you to, especially if you are not in the habit of taking time for yourself. My husband Brian likes to quote this to me..."if you don't come apart, you will come apart!" Even Jesus took time away and knew the importance of it.
My veg time of course is on my porch! It is a place that I have set aside to soak in nature, contemplate, dream, create, and hear from God. I hope you have created a space to do those things, too! It’s quite refreshing and my location for soulcare to take place. I just recently read an article about Ecotherapy and the need to be in nature. My soul longs for the mountains, streams, wide-open spaces, and the smell of honeysuckle and giant trees portraying umbrellas shading a rocky winding path. Even God placed Adam and Eve in a garden, a place of beauty, fragrance, and life! I believe He knew the importance nature has on the soul. Let me encourage you to break away. Go into a place created by God, breathe in His beauty, soak in His majesty, feel the many textures, listen to the birds, and release your worries. Take time experience the magnificence of our Creator, our Father, and the one who designed you and loves you intimately. He is a jealous God and desires us. Come, all you who are weary and heavy laden…He will give you rest! (Matt. 11:28) I’ve taken 20-minute excursions to Hilltop Arboretum, Rural Life Gardens, Independence Park, and walks in my neighborhood just to get away from the mundane and stress simply to give my mind and soul a little care. But for me, the porch is my favorite for short breaks! ...Especially early in the morning.
During one of my days on the porch, I began to think about PEACE. It didn’t seem that I had very much of it lately and finally I took a little time to ponder it! I tried to recall every scripture about it, every song title and location where I could remember feeling at peace. I focused my mind and heart on a way to remind me of His peace. In this fast-paced rush of life, people everywhere are screaming out for peace! In my own world, I have found that when my life is in chaos, peace is absent. So, "How do you maintain peace in a chaotic world?" I ask. Take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ! (2 Corin. 10:5) And as I thought, I began to piece together each letter of peace with a word. These acrostics remind me of things that I must release or embrace. Some are created with deep thought and personal meaning, perhaps making no sense to you, but I wanted to share them. Let me encourage you to create your own. How many can you list? I pray that some of mine may cause you to think or encourage you as you seek after peace.
Peace is a heart at rest and is given to us by Jesus! It was one of the gifts He said He would leave and give us as He was preparing for the cross. John 14: 27 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.” When something is given, it is a choice we must make to receive. The world can provide outward peace. It is only the peace of Jesus that can give us inward peace and it is often an unexplainable peace. So why does it seem that it flees us so quickly? My thought is this…peace doesn’t flee us, we flee from peace. Peace is found in the presence of the Holy Spirit. Our neglect of Him, our personal strength or will, and our push to be earthly productive moves us away from sustaining our peace and dependence on God. It’s seems a simple fact but not one that is easily maintained. He never leaves us but sometimes we turn our face from Him. We must continue our steadfastness by drawing near to Him.
Perhaps you need a little peaceful breakaway. If you don’t make time for it, God will surely put you in a place to make you rest! I’ve seen it happen too many times in my own life and in the lives of my friends and family. Let me offer you this solution. Come to our October Restore Retreat and pull away for a weekend of restoration and renewal, spend time in the richness of God’s Word, prayer, worship and enjoy a little ecotherapy in the beauty of His creation! October is a great month to get away! And…I will be teaching a little more about the peace that God gives. Click the picture for more information and registration. Won't you join us?
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