Perfect Peace

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You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.
Trust in the Lord forever,
for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal.

Isaiah 26:3-4

About a month ago, I was cramming every nook and cranny of my roommate’s car full of the many items I deemed absolutely necessary to bring back to college.  Now, one month later, all those little things have a place, I have finished my homework for Monday, and I am thinking back to that week before I left for college.

Although I was incredibly excited about coming back to school, I was also apprehensive about the many different situations that I had predetermined could maybe-potentially-possibly go wrong. Does anyone other than me do that? After a few conversations about my worries with my parents, my mom looked at me and said,

“Breanna, you are not guarding your mind. You are allowing every little thing to slip in. You need to get back control of your mind.”

She was absolutely right, and it woke me up to just how much I had let my guard down in my mind. My thoughts were all tangled up and repeating themselves over and over in a pattern that was not helpful.

I decided that week and as I made the long drive back to school, that I was going to be diligent in guarding my mind–in setting it on the Lord and His truth, rather than my misconceived notions of reality.

I love the verse at the top of this post. I love that the word “steadfast” is used to describe the mind.  Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines steadfastness as “very devoted or loyal to a person, belief, or cause : not changing.” Why are the people in this passage’s minds steadfast?  Because they trust in God.  And because they put their trust in God, they have a perfect peace.

I’ve been experiencing that peace this semester. Peace like I have never known in my life.  There are plenty of reasons why I should not be peaceful right now.  I have more classes, activities, work hours, responsibilities, and homework than I have had during any previous semester.

But I’m not focusing on the little problems or stress that can come with my schedule.  Rather, I am choosing to take it a day at a time, moment by moment, thinking about trusting in the Lord.

One of the unexpected blessings of this semester has been waking up at 5:30 or 6:30 every morning to go to work in the cafeteria. My job is to set up different food bars for the day, and  I have an hour to an hour and forty-five minutes every morning before the sun comes up of quiet. It is in these moments, that I often start to feel anxious as I consider the tasks that lie ahead for the day. But it is also the time, that God is using to teach me to trust in Him more and let His truth penetrate my mind and my heart.

When the panicky, stressful thoughts arrive, I am combating them with praying the armor of God, praying for friends, reciting verses that I have memorized, singing praise songs, or not thinking anything all together. And with it comes a perfect peace. It doesn’t always come in that moment, or that hour. But without fail, the more time that I dwell on the Lord, on His character, and His promises, the things of this world fade away and His perfect peace remains.

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