Peace Under Pressure – Quiet Dinner
Key Bible Verse: The peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. – John 14:27
Arriving at my mother’s New York apartment for dinner for the two of us, we sat down to a festive table. Just then the phone rang—for me. My teaching colleague’s voice broke, and I realized to my horror that he was weeping. A West Coast collision had landed his parents and sister in intensive care. He was at the airport. Could I come sit with him until his flight departed? I’d come if I possibly could, I responded, but I had to take care of some things first. Would he call back in ten minutes.
Back at the table, my mother called my friend’s request unreasonable and juvenile. She insisted that I not ruin our evening by going. Hearing what I’d been saying to myself expressed aloud made it appalling. I resolved to go as soon as he rang again. But when he called, he said he’d gotten hold of himself; I no longer needed to come.
This apartment was a haven from everything that seemed to threaten my peace. My friend’s broken voice on the phone was calling me out into a dangerous world not simply for his sake, I suddenly saw, but also for mine. The true peace that passes understanding isn’t found in retreat from the battle—only in the thick of it.
—Frederick Buechner in The Sacred Journey
My Response: Is the peace I’m protecting robust enough to invade turmoil?
Thought to Apply: The peace of God, in the midst of the uproar around us, gives us the assurance that everything is all right.—Bob Mumford (writer, speaker)
Adapted from The Sacred Journey (Harper & Row, 1982)
Prayer for the Week: Heavenly Father, show me how my misguided thinking leads me down the path of worry and fear; help me to see that no problem is bigger than you and your love; may you be glorified by the peace I experience in times of trial.