Tag Archives: internal

PEACE is Peace of Mind (Repost)

This post is reposted especially for the Facebook group Pursuing Peace. Peace of mind is surely worth searching for.

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Sunday, February 21, 2016

peace of mind, swirl

PEACE is Peace of Mind

Continuing the journey today. I am traveling around to various locations over the next weeks in my efforts to pursue PEACE.

My friend and colleague from the Des Plaines Ministerial Association, Elder and Pastor Chuck Reid, invited me to attend the church he pastors, Bethesda Worship Center in Des Plaines, Illinois. I was so glad I had the opportunity to attend there today, after the service at my own church, St. Luke’s Christian Community in Morton Grove.

When the service had ended, I had the opportunity to talk with a number of people in the congregation. We had some lively conversations, and their personal definitions of PEACE touched my heart. I’m going to be sharing them during the next few days.

I will begin with Ne’Cole Fort, whose personal definition of PEACE is Peace of mind.

This lovely woman was camera-shy, but I assured her that I would certainly post her definition of PEACE even if I did not take her photo. And, what a wonderful definition it is, too!

Peace of mind. Ne’Cole said, “If I don’t have peace of mind, everything else seems out of order. My mind is the battlefield.” She talked of the orderly mind, and about how PEACE helped everything internal—in her mind and heart—to be properly in place.

As I reflected on this excellent definition, I thought of the verse in Romans 12:2 that tells us believers to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. Yes, the mind is the battlefield! But if God is with us, on our side, we will win the battle (as Martin Luther tells us in his hymn “A Mighty Fortress”).

Dear God, thank You for the opportunity to worship with a new group of believers today. I thank Pastor Chuck, his wife Barbara, and all of the good folks at BWC for their warm welcome. Gracious God, I pray that You might be amidst their worship, empower their prayers, energize their outreach, and anoint Pastor Chuck’s preaching. I thank You for Sister Ne’Cole’s definition of PEACE, and I pray that You might send peace of mind to all those who so sorely need it, tonight. I pray these things in the powerful and peaceful name of Jesus, amen.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

PEACE: Becoming More Like Jesus

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Saturday, April 2, 2016

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PEACE: Becoming More Like Jesus

I talked with students at St. Viator’s High School in Arlington Heights some days ago, in the lunch room. Anyone was free to come up to the table I had set up on one side of the large room to make a sign with their definition of PEACE.

This was a wonderful chance to talk with young people and get their viewpoints on PEACE.

First, Allison’s personal definition: “PEACE is respect for everyone and everything.”

I asked her to give me a further explanation of her statement. She said, “If you respect everyone you won’t be mean to other people or push them around. It’s important to respect everyone’s boundaries.”

As I compared the two definitions today, one immediate comparison came to me: one was the internal view of PEACE, and the other the external view. Allison gave the understanding of PEACE towards others, externally.

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Second, Colleen’s personal definition: “PEACE is being surrounded by people and things that make you more like Jesus, because in Jesus we find peace.”

I wanted her to tell me more about this intriguing definition. She said, “If you’re surrounded by people or things that help you follow Jesus, then you’re more likely to do the right thing.  And, more likely to have peace in the world.”

As I reflected on this second definition, and continued to compare it to the first, I kept thinking of being like Jesus. That’s an “inside job!” Becoming more and more like Jesus will help us to find peace. He told us in John 14 that He was leaving peace for us. Peace in the midst of all kinds of crap. Peace even though. Peace despite. Peace afterwards.

Dear God, thanks for such great definitions. And, thanks for helping us all to think further about PEACE. Lead us in becoming more and more like You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

Internal Life? Or External Walk?

matterofprayer blog post for Monday, December 30, 2013

winter road

For the past few years, I’ve been concerning myself with—myself. I have been striving to maintain some kind of spiritual balance, working on my internal, spiritual component. I pray regularly (or at least, try to). I visit my therapist and spiritual director regularly, work out on a weekly basis at the local YMCA gym, and I even practiced relaxation and meditation in an intensive way for several months. In all of this, I have been working on the inner “me.”

I have also been intentional with my prayer life. Not only have I been praying on an increasingly regular basis, but I’ve also started a prayer chain and prayer blog, so we all can be encouraged in our personal prayer lives. This helps my inner relationship with God prosper, too.

But, what about my relationship with others? How about my family? Friends? What about those at church, or at the gym? What about my co-workers, or strangers I meet on the street? Have I been as studious and diligent at developing my relationship with them?

Yes, I am called by God to be in relationship with God—the vertical relationship.  But I am also called to be in community, as well—the horizontal relationship, one with another. One of my spiritual gifts is helping people. And by nature, I am kind and compassionate in my relations with others. It’s my relationship with others and with my local community (as well as their relationship with me) that I want to work on in 2014.

That’s why 2014 is my year to be kind. To help. To be of service. Intentionally.

(I will explore my thoughts and experiences of my year of service throughout 2014. I’ll do this at a new blog— www.ayearofbeingkind.net, starting on January 1, 2014. I’m excited! Visit me there, too.)

Let’s pray. Dear God, as the old year ends and the new year begins, I see new hopes ahead. New opportunities. New experiences. God, be with me as I begin a year of intentional service. I pray that this service be God-honoring. I ask You to lead me into places and experiences that You intend. Even challenging and difficult things. Protect me, guard me, guide me. I know You will be there, holding my hand. Thank You for my friends and prayer partners, who will be right by my side (in prayer!). God, in Your mercy, hear our prayers.