Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Peace of God Will Guard Our Hearts

There's a little piece of my heart that always hurts.  Not a day goes by that I don't think of my dad.  Not a day goes by that I'm not overwhelmed by a deep sadness.  Sometimes the overwhelming sadness only lasts a few seconds, sometimes just a few minutes, but nevertheless, it comes every day.  Every. Single. Day.  And when it comes, I feel like my heart is being squeezed so tight, and it just hurts.  It aches. 
If I had another chance... the things I'd do differently.  Oh boy, would I try to be a better daughter.  I'd be more. It breaks my heart that my time with him is up.  Has been up for over a year.  It breaks my heart that Cohen will never know him.  Even over a year later, I'm still so shocked that I'll never see him again.  I'm not even kidding.  It's surreal to me.   
This year has definitely had its fill of stressful times, and I'm so quick to become wrapped up in anxiety. It's a major weakness for me.  In the back cover of one of my dad's Bibles, he has written, "Anxiety is mark of spiritual insecurity."   Ouch. But so true. I've covered my desk at school with Bible verses, and one of those verses is Philippians 4:6-7, " Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  This is one of my favorite sets of verses.  The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts.  Those words are full of amazing comfort.  As I was reading the verses tonight, I was drawn to the verses below it.  "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy- think about such things.  Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me- put it into practice.  And the God of peace will be with you."  I love these verses.  May I set my mind on the pure, the praiseworthy, the lovely.  May I find the good in everything I do, in everyone I encounter. May I dwell on the good, sweet, loving memories of my daddy.   May I give second and third and fourth chances, with a forgiving heart and a loving attitude. May I find the light of Jesus throughout my day.  May my whole life be about Him.  Finding Him throughout my day. Finding Him on good days, and then searching for Him relentlessly on the bad days.  For He is good.  He is right.  He is pure.  He is admirable.  He is lovely.  May I be like Him. And then, through these things, the peace of God will surround me. 
Easy to write about, easy to want to be like this, but hard to do. So, so hard to do.  And I will fail.  But luckily, He is forgiving.  Full of forgiveness. 
Burn bright. Shine. As Cohen is so fond of saying these days, that's our only choice.  Just shine.  I pray that I allow God to make me more like the verses above.  Mold me, create me, help me, and forgive me for falling short over and over again. 
I miss my daddy.  As I wrote the words at the beginning of this, I could feel God tugging at my heartstrings, gently reminding me that although my earthly father is no longer here, He is.  He's here, willing to give me another chance, and another, and another... to do things differently.  To be more. To be more like Him. 
All of me.  He wants all of me. 

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