Peace can’t be tacked on to an agitated yesterday or pre-applied to tomorrow’s unknown.
Have you ever gotten to the end of the day and regretted wasting it on worry and anxiety?
I know I have.
I’m not sacrificing today’s peace and joy to the uncontrollable unknown.
By God’s grace and with His help, I’m going to love my life by practicing peace.
5 Disciplines to Practice God’s Peace One Day at a Time
1. Celebrate today like it’s a bonus day.
Yesterday, Rev and I celebrated 9 years of bonus days. 3,288 days. Days together we didn’t think we’d have. September 20, 2007, Rev had a pericardial stripping, where a cardiac surgeon spent six hours chipping the thickened and hardened lining off his beating heart. (Read the story here.)
This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad today! Psalm 118:24
Treating each day like a gift, a bonus, helps me live intentionally. And intentional living today refuses to dwell on the past or the future.
2. Take every thought captive . . . reject guilt and worry.
I recently read a great idea to seal today off from yesterday and tomorrow.
Live in an airlock space. Imagine the door is closed to yesterday and you can’t open the next door until it’s time to move into tomorrow. Enter the space with thanksgiving and leave it with repentance. No guilt and no worry.
Today, in the airlock space, is more than enough to handle.
So don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will have its own worries. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34
3. Do what you are able to do today.
Have you taken on more than you can handle? There are so many expectations on our lives today. Just taking care of a family pushes the limits and when you add a job or volunteering . . . well, it’s no wonder most of us come to the end of the day long before we come to the end of our to-do list.
Remember to manage each day with grace. It’s okay to say no. It’s okay to set priorities. In fact, it’s not only okay, it’s God’s will. You can’t do everything for everyone. So, spend time with God and ask Him to help you manage your time according to His plans and purposes for you.
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:2
4. Trust God to meet your needs today.
Have you read the Bible account lately of the way God provided food for the Israelites in the Wilderness? Each morning manna appeared on the ground and they were to trust Him by gathering just enough for that day. If they saved it overnight it smelled bad and was full of worms. (Exodus 16)
Each day . . . there was just enough. Once a week, on Friday, they were to gather enough so they could rest from gathering on the Sabbath.
I love that!
God is able to meet today’s needs. He will meet today’s needs and even make it possible for us to take a Sabbath rest if we trust Him.
I often sense Him saying, “You have so little faith.”
With His help, I believe I can trust God’s ability to take care of me today.
Look at the birds in the air. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, but your heavenly Father feeds them. And you know that you are worth much more than the birds. Matthew 6:26
5. Just breathe. Breathe in peace and breathe out conflict.
I have a dear one who often takes a deep breath and says, “In with the butterflies out with the bees.”
Great visual right?
When the moment is overwhelming and I’m tempted to make it worse by adding the past and the future, I have to stop and just breathe. Breathe out frustration, worry, and anxiety and breathe in God’s gift of peace through prayer. When I prayerfully remember His past faithfulness and lean on His promises I have everything I need to know He is able to get me through this moment as well.
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:3
Do you find it as hard to live in the moment as I do? Isn’t it hard to let go of yesterday and refuse to worry about tomorrow?
It’s funny, moment by moment is the way life is lived whether we like it or not. So, it’s up to us whether we will live those moments with peace or sacrifice them to regret and worry. The choice is ours.
Steve Maraboli said:
“Although time seems to fly, it never travels faster than one day at a time. Each day is a new opportunity to live your life to the fullest. In each waking day, you will find scores of blessings and opportunities for positive change. Do not let your TODAY be stolen by the unchangeable past or the indefinite future! Today is a new day!”
So celebrate each new day. Take peace-robbing thoughts captive, do what you are able, trust God, and breathe prayer.
You and I can live one day at a time with God’s help.
And finally, add one more question to gain perspective…
Will this matter a year from now?
It’s surprising how often the answer is, “no!”
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