In Georgia there is a town whose tag line is: Great and Growing. Little things like a town having a motto that’s fun and uplifting, help make life a little lighter.
There’s a lot of hard, negative, not so good things we could dwell on. Not just in world affairs, politics, economics, etc. Things in our own little worlds that trip us up and cause us heartache, pain, discomfort. But these things are temporary – really, they are.
Maybe it’s time to have the attitude of the under five group. One of my grandsons, when asked how his day was, or how his class went, or what he thinks of just about anything answers with a sincere: Great! He answers that way even when he’s tired out or not feeling good. Maybe he instinctively knows this: “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” (Philippians 4:8b NLT)
Hmm, I tend to get lost in the rhetoric at times. Sometimes let fretting dictate my thoughts. It’s not like we should hide our heads in the sand and not know what’s going on. But the point is, where do we let our souls dwell? In the urgency of wars, crime, hateful actions that abound, corrupt politicians, etc.? No, we pay attention to our world, but seek God for direction. God’s asking us to bring our thoughts back to that which will most encourage us.
You see, the very next verse says: “And the God of peace will be with you.” (Philippians 4:9b NIV)
I think that’s what all weary souls are searching for, just a bit of peace. God says we can have it in abundance. But we won’t find it on social media, the news, our bank accounts, or a vacation.
When Jesus was about to give up His life so that we could live forever, He gave us something special: “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27 NLT)
We don’t always accept the gift. We put it on a shelf and look for our own definition of peace. Perhaps it’s time we dust it off, open it up, and let it fill us mind, heart, and soul. “Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7 NLT) That’s it, live in Jesus.