“The fruit of righteousness will be peace;
the effect of righteousness will be quietness and confidence forever.
My people will live in peaceful dwelling places,
in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.”
“For God is not a God of disorder but of peace.”
A good number of years ago, I asked an artist friend of mine to create a painting for my folks. It was done on the surface of a rock and the artist used the contours as part of the scene. It’s quite extraordinary, at least to me. The painting depicts my parent’s cabin at Betula Lake in beautiful Whiteshell Provincial Park Manitoba. On the back of the piece I asked her to inscribe verse 18 from the scripture above. “My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.”
In bygone days the cabin was a sanctuary. The only place I could truly relax, where I could sleep so deeply and so well and wake rested.
It was while I was considering this month’s theme, in quiet reflection, that I recalled the painting and searched the Bible for the passage of scripture it referenced. When I read themGod began speaking to my heart, calling me to be less anxious and distressed.
Though I am not plagued by anxiety as some are, I find lately I am on edge and prone to head that direction more quickly than I am to taking a step back and viewing the situation for what it is, often a mole hill and seldom a mountain in the grand scheme of things. He has called me to find righteousness which is only found in Christ. Spending time with him, not necessarily doing, or reading or journaling, just ‘being’. There I will find the ‘fruit of righteousness,’ which is ‘peace’ and ‘the effect of righteousness’ which is ‘quietness and confidence.’ And not just for a moment but the scripture says ‘forever.’ He is the Way to stop the theft of my peace. A reminder that “In Him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28)
In both writing and life there is a call for me to be at peace and also a call for order in my world. Though the verse from 1Corinthians is speaking of worship in its context, it is true that God is not a God of disorder in anything. One has but to look on creation and it is obvious. The placement of the galaxies, of stars, of planet Earth in relation to our star, the sun. The incredible way nature sustains itself without our help, only God’s. When I feed the birds it is for my enjoyment, not because God needs my help. It all amazes me and leaves me gobsmacked or maybe more aptly ‘God-smacked.’
He has created everything around me and every provision is from Him. From my family to my house, to my chair, to my time. And I am talking about what we may consider the menial stuff. The closets, the cupboards, the spaces filled with the shoving of stuff to be dealt with later. I need to take care of it. To give every area order but only after I ask Him to help me and guide me so it is done right, in ways I may never have considered.
Everything He asks of me will restore peace if I surrender sit to Him and do it His way. My writing will improve and I will be more productive, my life will improve and it may seem that time has increased. The focus will be on Him for His purposes and more will be accomplished, more of what’s important anyway. This is what I believe the Lord has shown me and is telling me. Now I must decide to trust and obey, to step out in faith and do what is required. My heart and my spirit are saying, buckle up – 2022 could be a wild ride. Praise God.
Below are pictures of the rock which I was able to bring home after my parents passed away.