Resting in Peace

What a blessing it was to be the guest speaker at my church’s annual Mother’s Day Tea this weekend!

Although I usually shy away from public speaking, I decided to talk about a challenging area in my own life: finding peace. Specifically, I wanted to share ideas on how we can each find peace in our everyday lives, no matter where we are in that moment.

If you have been reading my blog posts regularly, you will know that peace and rest are important topics to me. Despite my busy schedule, I’ve learned to find peace through intentional rest. I say “intentional” because we must recognize our need for rest, and then be very deliberate in making it a priority.

Forced rest is no fun when you allow your pace in life to run you into the ground. Trust me . . . I know. Internalizing stress led to chest pains and an overnight stay in the hospital last year. Fortunately it was nothing serious, but that scare caused me to re-evaluate my priorities and I learned a valuable lesson in the process.

While God wants us to use our gifts to glorify Him, to care for our families, and serve others, we cannot do that if we are completely exhausted. God did not create us to live life with our foot on the gas pedal from morning to night, yet for many of us, that is the only pace we know. We have accepted this as normal and we feel powerless to apply the brakes.

Intentional rest doesn’t require taking a vacation day or spending an afternoon at the spa (although that does sound tempting 😉). Instead, I ask God to help me slow down as a reminder that my personal peace needs to be a priority. It does require loosening my grip and letting Him take control, but God always provides me with that much-needed time and space to re-charge, even on my busiest days.

Finding peace may look different for each of us, but for me, it’s as simple as taking a walk around the block, reading a devotional, or just lying down for a quick nap.

So the next time you feel yourself running on empty, slow down, take a deep breath, and seek peace in the Lord’s presence. Let Him be your resting place.

Time and Space

Despite all the crazy weather forecasts from a week ago, I didn’t buy into the hype about a big snowstorm coming our way. Yesterday was certainly brisk, with a few snowflakes thrown in, but we didn’t need to break out the shovels.

I have a very short drive to work each day, and my route takes me down a single lane, unpaved road. Even though there are townhomes springing up all around the edges of our neighborhood, this one little road allows me a brief drive through the countryside each day. I drive slowly because there are usually deer grazing in the tall grass on the shoulders, and their movement can be unpredictable. I’ve had a few close calls at night!

There are several older farmhouses tucked in along the road from an era gone by. Their gravel driveways and overgrown hedges stand in stark contrast to the perfectly manicured lawns on the next street over. But this time of year their yards come to life with flower bulbs that were likely planted generations ago. One sunny morning I stopped my car and leaned out the window to take a photo of some beautiful daffodils (pictured above). I sat quietly for a few moments before another car appeared in my rear view mirror. It was time to move on.

It is during such brief moments that I find myself increasingly longing for a quiet place in the country where I can sip my morning coffee and marvel at God’s creation. My favorite thing to do is watch the variety of birds visiting our feeders and birdhouses and listen to their beautiful songs.

At this stage in life, I know a quieter time is not far away. The trick now is finding a way to incorporate more of these moments into my everyday life. I will look forward to sharing these special times with you. 😊