Perfect Peace? - (Updated)

A day when I have a Chicago trip seems to be a good day for a revisit.  As I looked through posts, I realized that, once again, I've let my emotions take over as situations in my life become more complicated, compounded by more dental problems that necessitate that drive to Chicago today.  I so know I need to remember this verse today - and every day. Blessings, dear readers!

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Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3

I  seem driven by my emotions lately.  I find I'm upset most of the time.  Little things, the ones I could ignore before, become obstacles for me.  My heart alternates between its appropriate sinus rhythm and premature beats.  My anxiety seems to rise when those beats occur.  Now that they can last for extended periods of time, I'm far more tired.  Far more irritable.  It is as if I am a sponge for absorbing the stressors around me.

In many ways, I find this upsetting.  Yet, I am learning about myself.

The things I am learning are not necessarily things I want to know.

As I become in tune to the times my heart acts up, I am realizing how stress aggravates my irregular heart beats.

They happen when I am upset at something.

They happen when someone else is upset.

They happen in crisis situations.

Lying down, relaxing (did you know that lowering your jaw and relaxing your tongue helps calm you down?  You look like a dork - but it seems to work!) Listening to music, reciting God's word - particularly the references to fear -  all help.

What don't I like to learn?

How reactive I have become.

I find myself wanting to control situations.  I feel myself becoming judgmental over how others should be doing things.  More often than not, when I do what I call a 'body check' ( stopping and seeing how tense my muscles are), I'm pretty tense.

I'm absorbing a lot of toxic things from my environment.  I'm holding on to them.  In many ways, I am making my health worse.

My environment is chaotic - with my own poor health - my husband's death - my mother's battle with dementia- and then raising my daughter's two children and homeschooling them (necessary issues there), and having 7 people in the house creates a lot of interesting situations. 

I find I don't seem to be able to let go of so many of the problems.

Why all of these confessions?  Why not maintain the image that I've got things under control and am walking this walk with serenity?  

First of all - that's a lie and second of all, God told us to confess our sins to one another.  Sins?  Is that what these are?

I believe so.  You see, I do have more control over my emotions than I realize. How do I know?  Because of God's promise.  We are promised perfect peace. 

And I am so far from that.  And as I write those words I realize that means I am further away from God than I realized.  As much as I know about God and as much as I write about God - I still haven't handed everything over to Him.  

Because as the verse says - I am not keeping my mind "stayed on Him."

How quickly my thoughts stray!!  

How quickly I focus on my heartbeats or the words being said by others or the situations at hand.  

As I again struggle to find words for my post for today, I think - how in the world can any of this encourage anyone?  How can my putting myself out there like this help anyone along this road.  Yet, I believe God is calling me to more transparent writings.  I delve deeper and deeper into what God is revealing to me ... in me.

In all of this I am, myself, encouraged.  I know God is in my life.  I know He is calling me to a yet closer walk.  I'm realizing how constantly I need to focus on Him to get through these days.  And I am finding that I want to keep my mind on Him.  I'm so imperfect in doing that.  My emotional spirals show that.

Yet, I'm working on it.  No ... God is working on it as I am willing to allow Him to work.

I still believe that perfect peace is out there.

And once again, I am in seeking mode.

I don't know if you need to go on this journey today.  

But if you do, please clasp my hand in yours and let us begin this journey together.

Today.

By yourself you’re unprotected. With a friend you can face the worst. Can you round up a third? A three-stranded rope isn’t easily snapped. Ecclesiastes 4:12

Father God, Thank you for this day.  Thank you that, for today, there were words to type - words that I pray can encourage even as I need encouragement myself.  Help each one of us who is traveling this road to Your perfect peace, to be encouraged along the way.  Help us to help each other when the road gets rocky.  Help us to ultimately find You in a meaningful way.  Amen and amen.

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