Peace. This singular word has been reverberating in my ears for about seven years and has become my championed reality. I wholeheartedly embrace peace and know it can be attained. With that in mind, I’m starting a series on PEACE for the month of September. The series will serve a few purposes, 1) Clarify my thoughts and experiences 2) Imprint these truths even deeper on my heart and, 3) Hopefully inspire, or at least intrigue, you to begin your own study of peace.
“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3
What we’ve covered so far is that peace is attainable regardless of your external circumstances. It is an internal surrender to the God of the universe, who is the Source of all life. Peace is an active mindset and a daily practice. Ultimately, it is relinquishing control and placing your trust in our Heavenly Father.
PEACE IS RELEASING CONTROL
Releasing control is difficult. It is especially difficult for those of us who lean toward perfectionism and expect excellence in all things. You know this includes you when these type of thoughts cloud your mind: “It’s faster if I just do it myself, so I know it’s done right.” Or if you are the hover-er. You can’t help but “check-in” to make sure all is going according to plan. Other tip-offs that this may be you is if you balk at last minute changes to the schedule.
Okay, so most of us like to have control, or be in a place of authority to exert control, but we all know that control is an illusion. There will always be variables, changes, unforeseen complications, accidents and the occasional uncooperative person or toddler.
PEOPLE ARE DEPENDABLE
One of the many life-altering lessons I learned from our year in Iraq is that people are dependable. A by-product of my week of peace (read more here) is that there was an ease in asking for help. There was trust knowing it would be appropriately addressed. I had no qualms about releasing control on important tasks to my faithful friends and believing it would be accomplished. The great outcome of this is that I was physically free from the stress of the task and was continually surprised by the quality of effort and talent in executing the goal, usually much better than I was able.
Once you have this practice down of releasing control and empowering others to take over, you will be freed up to handle bigger/better/more meaningful things. So often, we are tied to our projects and find our identity in these ministries that we miss the opportunity to bless another and to be released into an upgrade.
EMPOWERING OTHERS WILL BETTER YOU
Think of it like this – you love lemonade and have faithfully served your lemonade stand for years. You have big dreams of seeing this business flourish and reach beyond your one yard. But, if you refuse to allow anyone else to mix the drink, serve the cups, or take the money, you aren’t freed up to expand. The investment of time, energy, influence, and experience to develop more is worth empowering and enabling others to take over.
Y’all, I am continually in this learning cycle. I get it and then have to really get it and then it circles back around… So what areas or projects do you need to release? Will saying no actually bring the doom and gloom we often imagine? Let me know in the comments if this resonates. Ever feel this way?! Love, love, love!