13 Jun Fresh Start
Morning is my favorite time.
This has been true as far back as I can remember. For me, there was something about the fresh start and anticipation of a new day. As a child, my family would move to the lake for the entire summer. Even then, I was an early riser. Sitting on our front swing, breathing in the day. I can still envision the calm expanse of water topped by a morning cloud of moisture. I was present. Fully aware. Anticipating the sun’s warmth that would melt away the pillowy mist and bring with it another day of adventure. It was beautiful anticipation. Expectant without expectations. Excitement without worry.
More recently I find myself fighting against mornings. Then again, as I peek at the image reflected on my ceiling, 3:05am—can we really call that morning? I listen. The loud drone of night-dwelling bugs are still busily chanting. There are no birds singing, no rays of sun peeking through the blinds; just darkness and bugs. Oh, and the hum of my mind. Drowning out the bugs is the worry of what I did or did not do yesterday, what I have to accomplish today, who I’m letting down, the should haves, the can’t haves, and on it goes. I shut my eyes, fervently willing my mind to go blank. Pray.
“On the surface, the problem may appear to be stress in my life, circumstances I can’t control, an aging hormonal system that is out of whack, or is there something else—something broken deep within my soul?”
As the minutes tick by I feel it; the growing acknowledgement that something has changed. And that “something” is shattering my favorite time, stealing my peace and firmly planting in its place doubt, fear, worry, and sometimes the heavy weight of sadness. On the surface, the problem may appear to be stress in my life, circumstances I can’t control, an aging hormonal system that is out of whack, or is there something else—something broken deep within my soul? John 14:27 says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” Am I trusting in the promises declared to me in His word or am I placing trust in my ability to control and make sense of my world?
It’s easy for us to long for days that we remember as “peaceful” when our life made sense: A dewy morning, a calm lake, or the promise of a day full of play or adventure. But if you have ever felt the depth of peace that Jesus promises, those former longings quickly feel like a weak substitution. The “unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit,” as 1 Peter 3:4 calls us to have, stems from a heart framed by this very peace and stillness that only comes from the Lord. He is steady; He is stable; He is all-knowing, and true peace can only come from standing firm on His promises.
“Am I trusting in the promises declared to me in His word or am I placing trust in my ability to control and make sense of my world?”
When real and difficult troubles enter our lives, do we have the depth of faith to lean on the only One who remains stable? Are we willing to give up control and trust that His will is the best option? So in the stillness of the morning, I find myself at a crossroads. Do I spend the next 2 hours trying to force sleep, or hatching my plan to right all the wrongs to bring perceived order or do I rise and embrace the day ahead, allowing His peace, even in my weariness to be my guide for the day? It’s a daily battle, and I pray I win more than I lose. What are you holding onto that He is offering to carry for you? Is your tendency to control, escape or trust when the pressures of daily life are pushing in?
Originally from Ohio, the warmth of South Carolina is now happily called home. She and her husband Mike have 2 married children, 3 grandchildren and are enjoying life with their soon to be teenager, Sydney. She loves adventure and has more interests and ideas then the time or energy to explore them! Amy attends the Greer campus.