I am this week's hostess and my selected verse is from John John 16:33 (NIV) "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." For my challenge, please make a card that to you represents peace or calm; with an image, color scheme, CAS layout or verse, something that speaks peace to you, but peace symbols themselves are excluded. The card has to speak peace through your own style.
One randomly selected winner form this week will win a $20 gift certificate to Daydream Designs. I chose to use a lot of white in my creation because I find a lot of peace in the CAS style and imagery. I used blues as a complement to the white because blue is a soothing color for me as well, soft ribbon and an image and verse that evoke for me the greatest peace I find in this life, which is through Jesus Christ. My thoughts on that verse are as follows:
Jesus doesn’t lie to us. He tells us that we will have trouble in this world. Life is full of troubles and fear-provoking situations. You lose a job, a house burns down, the doctor tells you its cancer, or a judge rules against you…and the list goes on and on.
I chose this verse for my challenge several weeks ago, little realizing that after my husband had a sudden heart attack in July that I would need to lean on that verse again this past week. We took another unexpected ambulance ride to the emergency room for another serious, potentially life-threatening situation that started off looking like an ordinary case of the flu.
And as I held my husband’s hand to comfort him, he asked if he had frightened me, yet again, with the possibility of his imminent departure from this world.
My answer was … no, not this time. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t in a place of 100% peace and calm, there was some anxiety, mixed in with worry, fear, apprehension, numbness and concern…the whole mixture for a cocktail of panic was present. But I have the choice to allow them to overwhelm me, or to take another hand in mine, the hand of the One who never lets us go. In Jesus, or as the verse says, “in me you may have peace.” And it is true. When I focused on Him, I had peace.
But fear doesn’t just strike during the crisis period; it likes to creep in afterwards as well, like cold air seeping around the edges of a windowpane. My husband needs a nitroglycerin tablet and my own heart starts to pound with worry. Or I look at the pile of medical bills, totaling a sum that would require a lottery win to pay in full, and my emotions dive yet again. One issue piles up on another issue and suddenly fear is back, full-blown and threatening to overwhelm me like a tidal wave. What do we do?
That verse and many others give us the answer. Our peace only comes through Jesus Christ. When those fears start to return I do one of three or four things; I reach for my bible, I drop to my knees, or I reach out to a Christian sister to ask for prayer. I know number four doesn’t work, pacing the floor and wringing my hands. When I reach step four I have to go back to steps one through three.
The source of our comfort or security is not a clean bill of health; we all will fall sick one day. It isn’t a full bank account or an excellent insurance policy. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” And when our heart is focused on Jesus the rest of the world fades away and we can experience true comfort.
Life is a journey of learning and continually relearning that lesson until one day we will be in His arms for real and our troubles will be in the past. But in this life, where troubles do still exist, lean on the only One who can give you true peace.
Thank you for looking. Have a blessed week.