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  • janetmchenry

Finding that Elusive Peace

Christmas is coming, and as I find myself making a Christmas list for my immediate family of 20, plus other family and friends, I remember again what my mom used to say when we kids asked her what she wanted for Christmas.

“Peace and quiet.”

She never said it as a joke. She was dead serious. I am the oldest of five. With my sister Nan’s passing five years ago next month, I have two brothers and a sister.

There was a lot of racket in our family of seven. A year younger, Nan and I got along fine. But for Pete’s sake . . . our brother of the same name was a busy boy–“busy” in that sense being a euphemism. We girls probably bugged him too much, and he’d get frustrated and lash out. Thinking back now, I am guessing he probably just wanted to be included.

As a mom of four grown children, I now well understand Mom’s desire for peace and quiet. Our two older kids fought like cats and dogs. So, when the kids would ask me what I wanted for Christmas, I echoed my mom’s response: “Peace and quiet.” In fact, when Craig organized a backpacking trip each year with the kids and their friends, I’d stay home for five days or so and enjoy the tranquility.

But peace isn’t the absence of noise. It’s a faith condition. I can have peace of heart, mind, and soul despite the swirl around me, because I trust God to see me through each day, hour, and moment.

Peace is not as the world gives, Jesus said. It’s not the right political party in office. It’s not a ceasefire of harsh words. It’s not all my ducks lined up just so in my life’s row. It’s knowing that no matter the situation, God will see me through with his presence and guidance and care.

Again . . . it’s a #LookingUp posture.

With an empty nest, Janet does indeed have peace and quiet in her home . . . but loves it when her nine grandkiddos visit and drag all the games out. An inspirational speaker, she is the author of 24 books–six on prayer, including the bestselling PrayerWalk and her newest, The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus. She would love to connect with you:

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