The new year dawned.  We are almost a week into the new decade.

If I were to be honest (and I will be), it has been a hard week.  I’ve had to toss my idealism aside, face my own shortcomings, live with depression that comes from SAD and a combination of heart-ache.  In other words, life has continued, and I see suffering all around me, as well as joy and beauty.

Living intentionally has come to include a word or phrase I choose each year.  The word is chosen prayerfully, carefully.  What is God teaching me, what does my Creator want me to focus on?

I had sensed, already in December, that I needed to focus on peace.  And the phrase I have chosen is “Be at Peace”.  There are a number of attributes of God that describe the One who created us.  Love is one.  God is love.  Peace is another.  Jesus is known as our Prince of Peace.

If we are made in the image of God, something I believe, peace should radiate from our lives.  Peace that transcends circumstances or feelings.  It is so much deeper.

I want to spend time this year reflecting on Peace, learning what Peace has to teach me.

Do you choose a word or phrase to focus on?  I’d love to hear what that is for you this year.

One of the joys I’ve had is to write two journals “Words of Faith to Live By”, which highlight twelve words each, with verses, journal prompts and breath prayers.  These guides can help to focus. (available on my website).

I’ve also chosen to pick a verse for the year, and this year it comes from Psalm 16:8.  The verse is a prayer, which I doodled this past weekend, a colouring page for those who would like a copy.   “I have set the LORD always before me, because God is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”  

The prayer book Jesus used was the book of Psalms.  I imagine him praying these beautiful words, as he also knew that he was the fulfillment of the ancient text.  John 1 says He IS the Word.  The Word that is living and active, that brings healing and encouragement and hope.

I’ll end with passing the peace.  I love that tradition in some churches.  Peace to You! 

I pray that the Peace that passes all understanding will settle into our hearts, and that even when the forecast is bleak (both political and weather), even when life brings us challenges and difficulties, even when we ache with those who ache, we can know that there is a Peace that surpasses all that.  It holds us, surrounds us, and fills us the the presence of God.  For that I am thankful.



this prayer can also be a colouring page

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