a place of peace…

a place of peace…

“LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.” (Psalm 16:5-6).
{photo compliments of Shirley}

A good boundary line; a pleasant place. Surely, I could live there. Surely I do… at least once or twice a week when I allow my heart to wander her landscape.

To walk her breadth. To sit on her front porch and hear the creakiness of her timber beneath my frame. To open her windows at night and feel the gentle breath of the mountain air caressing my skin. To watch her foliage slip in and out of seasons. To awaken with her mornings; to rest with her as she closes each day down.

Indeed, I could live there. At least I think I could. I realize she’s no longer a working farm, but it is fun to imagine my life beyond my current borders. To “see” peacefulness and then to envision me there, living out my days and nights and nights and days with her earth beneath my feet. I don’t imagine it would take long for my illusion to find interruption. No electricity and indoor plumbing would quickly engage my resistance. Mountain winters and mountain bears would be a difficult reckoning for me. Isolation? Well, it lives pretty isolated when left alone and never engaged.

And she’s got me thinking this morning. Thinking about those things that are initially pleasing to the eye that, when contemplated further, aren’t always as delightful as they seem to be. That drawbacks sometime shadow our dreaming. That with everything we imagine that might bring us peace on earth, there comes a reality alongside that everything to remind us that an earthly utopia doesn’t exist. That there is no ideal or perfect puzzle fit with the pieces of our lives because God doesn’t intend for us to remain fixed on the conditional nature of planet earth. God intends for us to remain fixed on the unseen boundary lines of his eternal forever.

Peacefulness never walks far from its contrast—chaos. Where there is one, there has always been the other. They may live in isolation from one another—separate farms with distinctive boundary lines—but peace and chaos are neighbors. One step in an alternate direction lands you on your neighbor’s property. You may not be intentional about the steps that take you there, but once you arrive within the borders of an unfamiliar land, you cannot help but notice the contrast. Peace doesn’t live like chaos, and chaos doesn’t live like peace. They may live next door to one another, but the way in which they operate their farms shares little resemblance.

Peace lives internally. Chaos lives externally.

Peace operates from anchored understanding. Chaos operates without anchors, tossed about and driven along by the wind in search of safe harbor.

Peace says “it is well with my soul.” Chaos says “it will never be well… with my soul or otherwise.”

Peace calms the spirit. Chaos clutters it.

Peace rests with the unanswerable. Chaos keeps asking the questions.

Peace settles the soul. Chaos continually disrupts it.

Peace concedes “the way, the truth, and the life” to Jesus Christ. Chaos concedes “the way, the truth, and the life” to humanity—to manmade solutions and selfish ambition.

Peace authors with God. Chaos authors with the enemy.

Peace lives eternally. Chaos dies a painful death.

I want to live in peace, within her borders and with her Maker. Peace doesn’t live any more peacefully in the mountains just because it is the mountains. Peace lives peacefully because God is there. Wherever he superintends the soil is where peace will be found. He cares for my North Carolina backdrop even as he cares for the mountainous, Tennessee landscape. I don’t have to travel there to find peace; I simply have to travel within—to pause and ponder the inescapable truth that anchors my soul to sacred understanding.

The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places because the presence of the Living God lives within my borders. He dwells within me through the power of his Holy Spirit. He’s laid claim to my soul and planted peace within my soil. From time to time I venture beyond my borders—spend a night or two at a neighboring farm named “chaos”—but the seeded peace of Jesus always brings me back home. Back to the place where I have ample time to rock on peace’s front porch, time to listen to peace’s refrain, time to roam within peace’s borders, time to rest beneath peace’s sheltering watch.

Peace.

Jesus Christ.

A good boundary line; a pleasant place.

Surely, I could live there. Surely I do.

The door is always open, friends. Come and walk your Peace this weekend. As always…

peace for the journey,

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39 Responses to a place of peace…

  1. I love this post Mrs. Elaine:) All i need to find peace no matter where I am is to abide in Him and be filled with the Spirit:) I haven't been able to be on the blogs much lately, good to catch up with you:) Hope the Makenna pics blessed your heart, your prayers were a part of this whole in vitro process:):)

    Blessings,

    katiegfromtennessee

    katiegfromtennessee

  2. Indeed, with Jesus in our lives, the boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places… Can't imagine being anywhere without Him…

  3. thank you, elaine.

    we all need to be reminded that He leaves His peace
    with us, but we have to choose it.

  4. I think our minds go to the same places a lot, but your words say it just right, my words would never know how to express it so beautifully. I love coming here Elaine, it's always a challenge and a blessing.

    Love you,

    Sonja

  5. I LOVED this post!!! I needed it too…too much craziness going on in my life right now.

    thank you for sharing a blessing.

  6. Today the Lord has gifted me with a walk of peace, and her companion joy. Today the boundaries have truly fallen in pleasant places:

    A peaceful walk.
    A peaceful pondering.
    A peaceful sharing.
    A peaceful cup.
    A peaceful friend.
    A peaceful knowing.
    A peaceful living.
    A peaceful receiving.

    Most days my heart borders that chaos, but today I have been filled with His peace.

    Praying I will continue on peace path,
    Joy

  7. I love, love, love your contrasts between peace and chaos! Great post, my friend!!! You are always such a blessing!

  8. Peace give I to thee…not as the world gives..I have always loved that song. Praying for peace in and around the chaos of a busy household for us both. I love your writing.

  9. There's something so mesmerizing about farm houses, wrap-around porches, and nature's green hues that confirms PEACE is a place, and a Person.

    I'm happiest with my eyes closed while sipping tea there. And you're such good company!

    Kathleen

  10. It is a place of peace here in His arms. I love your peace-picture, and these peace-giving words. I've been working with a patient on this very thing…holding on to peace-giving words. Maybe I'll read this post in therapy…Do you mind?

  11. Great post to read especially right before I lay my head down on my pillow. I loved what you wrote here: Peace lives peacefully because God is there.

    Great post Elaine. Great truth.

    love you,
    Lelia

  12. This post was just for me for this time: I was sitting here watching the weather realizing that mine and hubby's tip to the beach "for some time of peace and quiet" may have to be cancelled due to snow. Yes I said snow on the Alabama Gulf Coast. Thanks fo reminding me that my peace is with Him not at the beach.

  13. Honestly, do words just flow from your heart to your keypad like that? My typewriter taps and yours does ballet!

    Beautiful post~contrasts thrill me, because I can see so much more clearly! Love it!

    I recalled your comment about our farm all the while I was reading…looks peaceful, but THE WORK!

    Yeppers! I get this one in more ways than one!

  14. What a beautiful post! And, I am with you on the journey. For me, the lessons of chaos never seem to end, but that's OK. He has all in His hands, including my own two.

    I know there is a place of rest and surrender I have not yet known. I am, at this point, living in a state of necessary yielding, hoping, praying, believing for more of Jesus than I have ever known.

    Thank you for your heart, Elaine! What a blessing you are, dear friend!

    Much love,

    Andrea

  15. Wow. This is a very powerful post. I needed to read this…Peace is not determined by the outward circumstances but rather for the simple fact that God is there!

    Thank you and God bless you.

    Gladwell

  16. "Peace authors with God. Chaos authors with the enemy."

    What you wrote above says it all for me Elaine. Thank you for sharing a place of peace…for it's with the LORD who is my Peace.

    Love you.

  17. dear elaine,

    thanks for the tip about "then sings my soul"

    i will try to find a copy…am sure i would love it!

    blessings,
    la

  18. I am so amazed how you type your words from your heart. I hope someday the Lord will enable me to do that. You are such an inspiration. Peace, Peace, wonderful Peace, coming down from the Father above.
    Nancy in NC

  19. In the midst of many things that could be chaos, I also choose peace. Blessed Assurance, Jesus is mine–He brings peace even in the trials of life.

  20. Elaine, this post really ministered to me!

    "Peace rests with the unanswerable. Chaos keeps asking the questions". The scripture "Be still and know that I am God" flooded my mind as I read your thought here. As we rest in His peace and stillness we have the comfort and blessed assurance that He is the answer to all of our questions.

    Have a blessed and peaceful weekend!
    Jackie

  21. Oh my word Elaine, this is one of my favorite posts! What a comparison and you brought the two words to life!

  22. oh Elaine,
    the verse at the beginning has been finding me all week in so many places. your words spoke to my heart as always. Thank you for blessing my day.

  23. I love this!

    Peace lives eternally and Jesus is the Prince who maintains it! I pray that I love within her boundaries forever too. 🙂

  24. one of my favorite verses, elaine. i have found that it is true in my life as well that even when i rebelliously rush into the chaos, "the seeded peace of Jesus always brings me back home." Thank God for His faithfulness and the peace that comes only from him.

  25. Once again–masterfully crafted. You are a "word artist", painting as certainly as those with brush in hand. Today it's peace that you painted. And I could have sat in the gallery for hours analyzing your creation from all angles and then just breathing in its beauty without any intentional study…

  26. I want everyone to know that reads this wonderful blog what a selfless, gracious and wonderful inspiration Elaine is. Just like Rebecca stated, she is a word artist. I rec'd the most wonderful gift from her today that anyone could receive. She is helping me to get closer to our Wonderful Lord. I strive to be like her but I will never be able to touch her, but I can strive. Nancy in NC