23 March 2010

A Moment Aside

In the midst of wedding planning and the cares of daily life, I was feeling dreadfully overwhelmed. I felt that I was failing at almost everything--remaining calm under pressure, staying sweet when there was too much to do or when I was tired, rembering that others are human too.

"Do you need a date night tomorrow?" asked my {very wonderful} fiance'.

So off we went the next day, to a close and quiet retreat, both of us ready to watch the sunset. Together.

Later, as I prepared for bed, feeling much more relaxed, I read of the apostle Paul, and the sunset of his life.

"His sufficiency was not in himself, but in the presence and agency of the divine Spirit that filled his soul, and brought every thought into subjection to the will of Christ. The prophet declares, 'Thou wilt keep in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.' The heavenborn peace expressed on Paul's countenance won many a soul to the gospel..."
That's what I need. Perfect peace.

"...Paul carried with him the atmosphere of heaven..."
I'm good at making sure I have my water bottle, purse, chapstick, list of things to conquer. Do I remember to carry the atmosphere of heaven when I get in the car to drive an hour to the next town over? What about when my fiance' or other friends come over to spend the evening?
"...All who associated with him felt the influence of his union with Christ. The fact that his own life exemplified the truth he proclaimed, gave convincing power to his preaching. Here lies the power of truth. The unstudied, unconsious influence of a holy life is the most convincing sermon that can be given in favor of Christianity. Argument, even when unanswerable, may provoke only opposition; but a godly example has a power that it is impossible wholly to resist." (The Acts of the Apostles, 510-511)

The promises are for me, not just for Paul. And I claim them today, not because of anything I have or am, but because of my great need.

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