It's one of those words that makes us pause in the madness of the day. A word that breathes longing into our hearts and minds. I want peace. I hunger for peace. I mourn its absence, delight in its presence. I pray I may share it, and am grieved when my words or actions send it skittering into the corners of others' lives. All my life I've been drawn to the word and its myriad meanings, and yet, as I face another day gnawed on by anxiety, I have to wonder...
Do I even begin to understand what peace is?
Or what it means to be at peace?
Days like today, I'm not so sure. Which makes me want to crawl back into bed and cower beneath the covers. But I'm not giving in to that powerful temptation. Instead, I've decided to do some research.
What is peace?
Where do we find it?
How do we lose it?
Is it something that we can keep, or do we only get it in pieces? Like the specks of mist that caress our faces when we walk in fog...
The fog is all around us. We can see it, cloaking our world. But only tiny bits of it actually touch us. And it takes but moment for those bits to dissipate. Is peace like that?
Or is it the fog itself, enveloping everything, affecting what we do and do not see, muting what we hear, surrounding us in ways we don't fully understand?
Webster's defines peace as "a mental or spiritual condition marked by freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions : calmness of mind and heart : serenity of spirit."
Serenity of spirit. Oh...how I long for that. But if I've learned anything in lo, these 55 years, it's that longing isn't enough. You have to act. To choose. To do your part.
So that's what I'm going to do. I choose to explore the true meaning, source, and power of peace. Don't know how long it will take, but that's okay. I have a feeling that this, like most of life, will be about the journey, not the destination.