There’s so much chaos in the world right now. In the midst of all the craziness, it is important to find your peace. A home filled with chaos and turmoil is not productive or healthy for any of its family members. How do we work on finding peace in the midst of chaos?
When I was young, one place that seemed the epitome of peace and quietness was the local library. Back then, libraries were bastions of silence. Where mousey spinster bespectacled librarians with their hair pulled back in severe buns stalked the aisles of books with their index fingers permanently affixed to their lips in an eternal “hush!” Ok, not really, but the silence part was there. I do remember being shushed on several occasions. The loudest thing in those libraries was the incessant humming of the fluorescent lighting.
One time we were there, I remember reading a story to my little brother. There was a woman nearby listening in. That didn’t really bother me until we got to a part in the book about the main character shooting spitwads across a classroom and having them smack against the chalkboard and stick there behind the teacher.
My little brother was young enough that he wasn’t reading on his own yet, so he was maybe 3 or 4. He interrupted to ask me what spitwads were. At this, the lady started snickering. I looked over at her, annoyed and slightly embarrassed, yet I continued explaining in great detail what this all-important component of the story was comprised of, and how, exactly, one would, if need be, launch such an item across any given room and how one had to give it the right consistency in order to ensure it had the proper sticky-factor like the ones in the story.
By this time, what had started out as a chuckle from the woman had turned into full out roaring, snorting laughter. I looked over at her again, this time just aghast that she’d be so *loud* in the library of all places. What in the world it was she that was finding so funny? I had merely been answering my brother’s question, after all…
It didn’t take much of this before a librarian rounded the corner. There sat a woman with her nose quickly stuck in a book, and my brother and I. She assumed that we were the culprits causing all the ruckus. She rounded us up, rejoined us with our mother who’d been browsing in another section of the library and we quickly left. At the front door, there was Laughy-Woman. Instead of apologizing, she merely gave me a wink on our way out.
Nowadays libraries (when they are open! Thanks covid!) are bright places of conversation and projects, community, and exploration. Library culture has changed drastically from when I was a child. No longer a peaceful sanctuary, necessarily. Is that a bad thing? Not at all. It just goes to illustrate that places of sanctuary are becoming harder and harder to find in today’s world.
Even churches are no longer the places of serenity, peace, and solitude they once were. There was a time when you could go into any church, any time of day or night, and the sanctuary would be open for prayer. That was before my time, but it’s a mindset that I “miss” nonetheless.
Luke 6:12 tells us that Jesus, too, escaped the worldly turmoil for a time. There are many examples of scripture of him going off alone to find peace. “One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God.”
Sometimes we need to find that peace in the little moments. Perhaps when the kids are napping, or are otherwise occupied. Take that moment of peace. Maybe it’s the early morning hours before the household awakens or it’s the hours of the dark night when everyone else is asleep. Take that time. Take a walk, even a short one helps rejuvenate the spirit. Intentionally appreciate and be thankful for the blessings He has given you. The breath in your lungs, the strength in your steps, the ability to reach up high or to bend down low to put away clean laundry and dishes. You get the idea. Peace can be found in places we don’t expect it.
Where do you find your peace?
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