Monday, June 8, 2015

Aged to Perfection

After a very busy weekend away, I sat down with my coffee this morning and opened my Bible. The Bible I've been using is still packed in my bag, so I grabbed the closest one and it fell open to Isaiah 26. I read through the entire chapter but my eyes and my mind went back and settled on  verse 3. My mom taught me this verse as a child. It says: You will keep him in perfect peace all who trust You.

I grew up with the old King James Bible being the "only" Bible and it states the last portion as whose mind is stayed on thee. The verse has significance to me because my mother had what was called a "complete nervous breakdown" just after I was born. She spent months in a mental hospital all drugged up and endured the maximum number of shock treatments. That was the treatment of choice back in the early 60s. So I grew up listening to her quote this scripture as part of her testimony of how God had brought her out and healed her; and I learned to meditate on scriptures to find peace in my own heart and mind.

As I thought about this scripture this morning I kept rolling the phrase "perfect peace" around in my head. It led me to thinking about another place in scriptures where "perfect" is used. It's in 1 John 4:18 and it says Perfect love casts out all fear. In years past, I've done teachings on "perfect love" and talked about how imperfect we are - but that perfect means mature. To be mature would mean it's been through some stuff and made it.

Caregivers have been and are still going through some stuff. We are by no means perfect; or at least I'm not! When my son first had his accident and I was sitting there with him, I often wondered what I had done wrong to cause this to happen. It took me months to come to any sense of peace in the matter - maybe even more like years. I had anything but  peace. My life was disrupted and put on hold. I was doing what I thought God had called me to do and if I was following Him and (at least what I thought was ) His plan - how could this happen?  What did I do wrong?

It took me a long time to sort through to peace and to anything that even remotely resembled trust again. But as my trust in Him aged and came to maturity it grew deeper rather than being discarded. I didn't do anything wrong -- life just happened. I learned to trust once again and I learned to let His peace rule in my heart and mind once again.

Trusting Him is a big part of caregiving. After all, He is our caregiver - He watches over us and dotes over us like we do our loved ones. He is constantly watching and protecting us. He advocates for our peace of mind. As we mature in Him and learn to trust Him even more our peace matures; and so does our love for Him. One might say that our peace and love are aged to perfection like a good wine. Over time, when we train our minds to remain on Him and His word instead of our situations, we gain more peace; and we are able to trust Him more - again.

Today I will meditate on His peace and His love that protect me. I'll turn my thoughts to how they guard my heart and my mind. I will purposefully trust Him more for the strength and wisdom to make it through today. Will you join me?

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