Learn how to have peace in the storms of life.
Learning how to have peace in the storms of life is a constant process. However, I have seen that as the storms come, we can start to grow stronger if we are seeking refuge in the right place.
A week ago life felt normal. We were focused on daylight time savings and dreaming of spring vacation. By Thursday, life started to be altered and a looming fog fell upon us.
Slowly things started to shut down, flights were canceled, plans were erased from our calendars. As someone who loves my planner, routines, and order I felt the panic rise in me. Chaos and the unknown causes me to panic and feel out of sorts.
In complete honesty, I had a couple of days where I felt the weight of it all on me.
As I read countless articles, listened to others’ thoughts and theories, I felt a variety of emotions rise within me. From fear to panic, to anger, to confusion, to sadness my emotions would bounce around.
Then one evening after talking to my husband I was reminded of the faith I hold so dearly. I was reminded that I have a choice. I can choose to spend these next few weeks in panic, checking my phone for news updates, scrolling Facebook or I can choose to spend these next few weeks filling my mind with things that are true.
As I fixed my mind and thoughts back on truth, I thought of Philippians 4:4-9
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
These verses have given me a good action plan for the next few weeks and for life in general.
How to Have Peace in the Storms of Life
Rejoice in the Lord
A simple way to rejoice in the Lord is to turn on worship music. Fill your ears with praise and your heart and mind will turn that way. Rather than filling our minds with future scenarios or non-stop news, put limitations on that and keep praise the focus of your mind.
Action Step: Turn on worship music throughout your day. Check out my favorite songs here.
Be gentle with others.
In verse 5 it says to let your reasonableness be known to everyone. In other translations, the word gentleness is used. In the storms of life, there are often various ideas about what the solution or action steps should be. We are often quick to share our opinions or argue with others, rather than choosing to be gentle and full of grace.
What would happen if we chose to be gentle? This means we are intentional with what we say or share on social media. Remember, everyone processes struggles in different ways. Choose grace.
Action Step: Think before you speak or post on social media.
I have challenged myself and I am challenging you, let’s start and end our days with prayer. Instead of opening the news tab on our phones to check the latest the moment our eyes open, let’s talk to God and open our Bibles. Throughout the day or night, as we feel anxiety rise, let’s choose to pray over speculating about the what-ifs.
Action Step: Start your day reading your Bible and praying before you dive into the news.
Fix our minds on truth.
It is so easy to let our minds jump on the wheel of worry. Without even realizing it, we fill our thoughts with speculations and theories, and soon are feeling overwhelmed by everything. When we are in seasons where life is hard, we can choose to either focus on the negative or on the good. Even the hardest of days, there is some good.
In the midst of the storms of life, let’s remember this: God is holy. In our worst-case scenarios, He remains the same.
Action Step: Start a list of the good that you see every day. Think of simple, everyday things to get you started. Here is an example of a list I made a few years ago.
When we focus on doing these things, we will see that peace follows.
This peace is only from God and it will sustain you in the darkest of days.
Hard seasons will come. We will have days where we feel the anxiety and fear rise within us, but we always have a choice. Today, I challenge myself and you to be reminded of the truth in Phillippians and refocus on these things.