By LESLIE LUDY
Whenever a new year begins, I often struggle with feeling overwhelmed. Ministry deadlines, looming household organization projects, and the pent-up energy of the kids due to many months of cold weather outside … all of these things can quickly pile up and make me feel agitated and rob my peace. When life takes a hectic turn and my emotions begin to protest against the constant demands of my life, a simple meditation on God’s reality can turn everything around.
Isaiah 26:3 gives us a truly remarkable promise: “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You.” How easy it is to seek peace through outward circumstances; extra sleep, an organizing blitz, a trip to the spa, an exotic getaway, a movie marathon, etc. .. and yet the secret to perfect peace is far simpler than we often think. Setting our minds on Him leads to peace, no matter what our circumstances may be.
One of the best ways I’ve found for keeping God’s truth in the forefront of my mind is listening to audio Scripture on my iPod: when I’m driving in my car, when I’m getting ready in the morning, and when I’m picking up the house. Hearing God’s Word spoken has a way of grounding me in truth. It takes my eyes off myself and places them on Christ. I hear His words of wisdom, guidance, comfort, and peace throughout the day, and it is hard to be frazzled when thoughts of His truth fill my mind.
Listening to worship music is another great way to keep truth alive and fresh in my daily life. Playing edifying music around the house brightens my perspective and sets a more peaceful tone in our home. (As an added bonus, when my preschoolers are busy singing along to worship songs, they forget about the toy that they are squabbling over, or that one of them just stepped on the other one’s pinky finger.) When I’m listening to music that helps me focus on Jesus, that huge stack of papers piling up on my desk and the ever-growing mess on the playroom floor doesn’t feel quite so overwhelming, because I’m focused on Him, and not my circumstances.
If the start of a new year has you feeling overloaded, overwhelmed, or distracted by cares, I encourage you to set your mind squarely on the Source of perfect peace … Jesus Christ. What a simple and beautiful solution for every stress and worry!