Peace & Joy
Updated: Nov 19, 2020
Growing up, one of my favorite things to do on vacation was to memorize where I was at fully. I don't totally remember where I learned how to do that, but I am beyond grateful I did. I can remember sitting on the beach on a Florida Vacation growing up where I looked to the left and scanned to the right, slowly remembering the waves. I remember wanting to remember it. I can clearly recollect the sounds. I remember the taste of the salt-water taffy seashell sucker I got at this generic version of Seaworld. I remember sitting in the mountains hearing my family play cards yelling "baby game" at one another as I scanned the mountains to find Gatlinburg's lights in the distance. The sounds of a guitar playing in the square in Olinda, Brazil. The smell of my tapioca. The strong taste of Sugarcane Root. I remember the insense smell from a Salem Witch trial tour I took in Salem, Massachusetts. I can also remember the hot chocolate smell from the whale watching tour boat on that same trip. I remember that for a whole other reason, but that's a story for another day.
I used to think peace was like that. Something I could bring up in my heart and mind myself when I needed it, just like the memories of these places I have been. Peace was the fortress I wanted to put around myself to keep me safe from pain and suffering. It wasn't until recently I started to understand a bit more where peace comes from. The kind of "Peace in all circumstances" kind of peace. It comes from Jesus. I mean, I KNEW that. It's one thing to know it and another to understand it.
I read the "Fruit of The Spirit" plan from She Reads Truth about peace this morning. (You can read it yourself here) There was a phrase in there that explained my misunderstanding of peace in a way I haven't been able to put into words.
"But when Christ came, He promised to give His disciples PEACE, not as a means of escape, but as a means to exist and thrive without fear in the midst of the chaos of our world."
Chaos and fear. Two of the most potent things happening right now with people in our world today. Two of the most potent things I think recently in my own foster mom'ing heart. I have had to wrestle out regularly that Even If things don't go the way I have it planned, God is still good. He is still sovereign. He still loves the kids in my home. Peace. Joy. Possible not because of my own doing, but because Christ came "as a means to exist and thrive without fear."
6 Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. - Phillipians 4:6-7
I am trusting that in the mess of foster care that Christ will guard my heart and mind. I am beyond thankful for how God has made me a momma in this season. I don't have to create my own peace. My peace comes from believing that God really does see things way clearer than I do. I'm choosing delight in the Lord, where my joy comes from.