Previously, I told you about an adoption devotional I’m working on, specifically for adopting moms. I’m writing some of the weeks, and I’m privileged to have moms who’ve adopted writing other weeks. This sample is from Day 5 of the week on peace, written by Allison Cunningham. She and her family lived with us during their fostering process in Nicaragua, a time that was filled with significant trial and transition… and yet Allison was able to find peace. In her week of writings, she guides us through the steps she took to unlock that peace.
There is a familiar saying, “practice makes perfect.” In recent years it’s been modified to “practice makes progress.” Based on our theme scripture from Philippians 4:4-9, I suggest that “practice brings peace!”
Paul exhorts us in this text to practice bringing our requests to God as well as to think on things that are true, noble, praise worthy and of a good report. It is not enough to merely have knowledge or understanding of God’s word. James 1:22 says, “Do not merely listen to the word and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” The key that unlocks access to peace is the practice of disregarding thoughts that do not line up with God’s word in exchange for truth.
One day after our adoption was complete and the integration of our daughter into our family was in full swing, I was in total meltdown status. All three of my children needed my attention to complete their homework, dinner needed to be made, my husband, now working in another state, was calling on the phone for his daily talk time and I was caught in the middle of it all!
Where is the pause on life button when you need it?
I was screaming for God to rescue me. When the height of frustration and the feeling that I was not enough threatened to consume me, I heard the Holy Spirit say, “Be a contender.” Immediately, this scripture came to mind and I knew what God was communicating:
For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (NIV)
The battle for peace is won and lost in our mind. We say: “Nothing ever works out…”
He says: No! In all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28
“I can’t do this anymore…”
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
“I am so afraid…”
God has not given us a spirit of fear but a spirit of power, of love and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV
Submitting thoughts to Christ takes practice. However, it is worth it! As you train your mind to think on what is true, you will experience peace like never before. Jesus loves you, his plan for you is good and his mercies never fail. Hold onto his word and likewise, be a contender for peace!
Prince of Peace, thank you for providing grace and peace no matter what my circumstances. May this truth always calm my spirit and bring me closer to You. Amen.