Tag Archives: Peace

Weekly Photo Challenge: Serenity ~ God’s Perfect Peace

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Serenity at Sea ~ Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

True serenity is not happenstance, as if found in some random place or elusive state of mind; rather, it is constant, emanating from an abiding landscape within, of a soul kept in perfect peace through Christ.
Sue Nash

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Last Fall, Jim and I were in Cabo San Lucas for his son’s destination wedding.  The tranquil setting above was lovely, especially at dusk.  This photo is one of my favorites and almost makes me want to take up sailing.

We both needed a break from all the medical drama last year.  Thankfully, God protected and enabled both of us to attend, and we had an enjoyable time.  We could not have done so, without His help.

Christ alone calms the storms we face and brings us an inner peace and serenity that nothing else can.

“You keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed on You,
because he trusts in You.”
Isaiah 26:3 ESV

“By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.”
1 John‬ ‭4‬:‭13-15‬ NASB

Close up at dusk

Close up at dusk

For similar posts of mine, see Weekly Photo Challenge, or go to The Daily Post.

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God’s Peace Is So Dear

A peaceful scene close to home

A peaceful scene close to home ~ taken last spring

Our time of fasting together as a local church body is over.  As I pondered what God did in my heart, I realized that although the many urgent prayer needs I sought Him for show no signs of change, He did do a work in my heart.  I found a level of peace in the midst of the battle that I desperately needed. 

I rest assured knowing that God has seen every tear and heard my supplications.  While I wait for Him to reveal the work wrought on my knees, I rest in His peace that is beyond comprehension.  A peace that makes no sense in the natural.  Given by the Spirit, the peace He brings is sufficient for the journey.  It is near and dear to the heart.

God’s Peace Is So Dear

No trepidation
Nor furrowed brow;
God takes our worries
Away somehow.

A peace that lingers
Though troubles stay;
Past understanding,
How peace remains.

Every fretting heart
His peace will change;
By the power of Christ,
Distress does wane.

But to find such peace
One must seek Him.
Only on our knees
  Does anguish dim.

It is when our cares
To Christ we bring,
That He lifts us up
On eagle’s wing.

As we plead for help
With prayers poured out,
He will heed each cry
Without a doubt.

We can thank God now
  That He does hear,
  And for peace He gives;
It is so dear.

“Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:6, 7

Sue Nash/2014

For other poems, go to Poetry Corner

The Christmas Challenge ~ Don’t Be a Scrooge

The December frenzy

The December frenzy

You may have noticed my lack of posting this month.  Just as with everyone else, December gets busy, so to maintain my peace during the holidays, I must carefully manage my time.  Unfortunately, that has meant infrequent blogging.

There is another reason for my lack of posting, though.  I often get disillusioned by what Christmas has become, so the days leading up to Christmas can start feeling like more of a challenge than a delight, for a number of reasons:

shopping, bargains, busyness, parties, wrapping, decorating, mailing, cards, cooking, planning, appointments, commitments, deadlines, to-do lists, activities, expectations, programs, productions, traveling,…….STRESS!

My struggle is in not allowing these reasons steal the simplicity of celebrating Christ’s birth.  Otherwise, I lose my joy and teeter toward apathy toward the season overall. 

I start looking and acting like a Scrooge.  Shocking, I know!

Deep down, I am not a Scrooge, though.  I absolutely love the true purpose of Christmas.  But somewhere along the way, the blessedness of the season has diminished.  My challenge (and I doubt that I am alone) is to avoid the trappings that steal the joy found in the Christ of Christmas.

The secret is in finding every way possible to get off the Christmas-frenzy train and stay in the peace-filled presence of the King who was born in a manger.

I wish that it were easy.  Since I am a Martha, though, it is always a struggle.  The enemy makes sure of that.  Yet there are ways to practice the simple wonder of the Savior’s birth.

In the next few weeks leading up to Christmas, I will share some things I have found beneficial.  I would also love to hear stories from you, of ways you keep the focus on Christ during the holidays.

Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
Luke 2:12

Sue Nash/2013

Stay With Me ~ In Perfect Peace

Don’t get distracted by roads that only have dead ends
Stay in continual
Communion with Me

I bring life
I offer hope
I provide help
I give peace

Stay with Me

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”
Isaiah 26:3

Isn’t it ironic that the time of year we celebrate ‘peace on earth, goodwill toward men’ is the very season our peace easily dissipates?   During the holidays, unnecessary stress and busyness distract us. 

Yet in the midst, it is possible to find peace ~ perfect peace.  Over the years, I have learned the power of setting boundaries and trying to stay focused on the peace Christ offers by abiding in Him.

Sue Nash/2013

Snippets of RainFor similar posts, see Snippets of Rain

The Work of Righteousness ~ Finding Quiet Serenity in Christ

A peaceful place near our home

A peaceful place near our home

Rushing, hurrying to and fro;
Why must we all stay so busy
And on the go?

Nobody is immune.
Loud is the cry of life’s demands,
Of things to do.

In the midst of the grind
Is a call to a place serene.
There peace, you’ll find.

The work of Christ provides
  A quietness for us,
When we abide.

Every Wednesday I have off from work.  Rather than use it as a time for rest, I typically scurry around by grocery shopping and doing other necessary errands.  By the evening, my weariness tells me that I crammed too much into my time off.

This Wednesday began no differently.  While driving home around noon, having already finished an appointment and loaded the trunk of my car with groceries, I got stuck at a long red light on the way back.

Finding That Life is Too Busy

As I waited, I noticed the steady flow of cars passing by.  I recalled the long lines I had just encountered at the supermarket.  As I pondered all that I still had left to do, I realized that just like for all the others out there, life gets busy.

I started thinking about how few of us slow down enough to enjoy the peace God’s righteousness affords.  We all have obligations, but life spent too busy to abide in His rest is not the life God intends.

Sure, we may start the day with quiet time with the Lord, but then often leave His presence to forge into the day.  We too easily forsake the quiet serenity derived from having His presence within.

The day before, the busyness had taken its toll on my tired body.  The sweltering heat, unbearable this time of year in the South, made me feel even more miserable.  Since I needed a break from the intense pace, I convinced my husband to join me for an evening outing to a nearby lake.

Finding Quiet Serenity in Christ in Spite of Busyness

By the time we arrived, the intense heat had dissipated ever so slightly.  The colors of the clouds in the evening sky were remarkable and the reflections on the lake soothing.  The glow of the setting sun gave the surroundings a colorful peacefulness.

My husband and our dog in the gazebo

My husband and our dog in the gazebo

This reprieve from life’s rigors helped restore my calm, and we all need this on occasion.  Yet God’s peace is available anytime.  Through the cross, Jesus did the work of providing us with peace and rest in Him.  However, to partake we must abide in His presence, no matter life’s busyness.  Isaiah 32:17 portrays the eternal rest found through salvation, but it also speaks of the quiet serenity His righteousness affords. 

Since I am a Martha by design, I doubt I will ever arrive at continually abiding in the Lord’s peace.  The next time I long to get away from the rat race, though, I don’t have to escape by strolling along some peaceful lake.  In God’s presence I find everything needed to calm my frazzled, wearied soul.  It is a place we all can unwind, finding rest from the noisome demands life brings.

Whenever I think on the quiet peace found in the presence of Christ, though, I will remember the photo of the lake.  To me, it is but a mere glimpse of the blessedness of that serenity.

What do you picture when you think about the quietness and rest found in the presence of Christ?

Sue Nash/2013

For similar posts, see Random Thoughts

Mark the Blameless ~ Their Future is Peace

Photo of wall mural in an Old Town San Diego restaurant

Photo of wall mural in an Old Town San Diego restaurant

Mark the perfect man.
Watch him,
Watch his life.

Will he fall?
Sure, he will.
Will he stumble?
He most certainly will.

But watch that man following God.
Very soon, he will get back up.
He will once again find peace.

Mark the blameless man, and observe the upright; For the future of that man is peace.
Psalm 37:37

*This is true of any man or woman following God. 

I have always loved this verse.  Christians have trials and fall down like everyone else, but God does not leave us in that place.  With His help, we get back up.  Because of Christ, we always return to a place of victory and peace. 

Do you know the One who will turn your life around and bring peace in the midst of any storm?  You can know Jesus, the Prince of Peace.  Call to Him today, ask for His mercy for your sins and surrender to Him as Lord.  Jesus will give you a peace that passes all understanding.

Sue Nash/2013

Something to Think About ~ Things Excellent and Worthy of Praise

Photo taken by my brother, Gary Stephens ~from Colorado Springs, CO

Photo taken by my brother, Gary Stephens ~ Colorado Springs, CO

If ever there were a picture of something excellent and praiseworthy, it is majestic mountains.  There is nothing much more beautiful than snow-covered hills against a brilliant blue sky.  In Colorado, where I lived for several years, scenes like the one above were commonplace.  God’s glory was daily on display.  It wasn’t hard to find excellence.

Although I understand the principle of keeping my mind fixed on things praiseworthy and excellent, I struggle by straying into:

frustration

distractions

bitterness

worry

doubt
fear

and the list goes on. 

Do any of you struggle, too?

God offers a better way, though.  What He proposes is not positive thinking, but instead excellent thinking.  When we focus on the glorious aspects about God and His creation, then add to that all the many blessings and promises He bestows, our minds need not fixate earthbound.  As the mountains tower above the valleys below, we can choose to place our thoughts on things heavenward.  We don’t have to get stuck in the boggy mire of problems and distractions below; we can look to the One who made heaven and earth.  We can think on things excellent and worthy of praise.

Instead of letting my imagination get away with me
I will think on ~

Things TrueIn order to prevent despondency
I will think on ~

Things NobleIn place of feeling resentful
I will think on ~

Things JustRather than dwell on all of my problems
I will think on ~

Things PureSo as not to worry unnecessarily
I will think on ~

Things lovelyTo avoid negativity
I will think on ~

Things of Good ReportTo eschew pride
I will think on ~

Things of VirtueTo resist ingratitude,
I will think on ~

Things praiseworthy

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue, and if there is anything praiseworthy – meditate on these things.
Philippians 4:8

Now, that is something to think about!

Sue Nash/ 2013