Building Peace with T.H.A.N.K.S
Several years ago I was challenged by a mentor to select a verse for the year. The idea was to select a piece of Scripture that I would focus on for an entire year, inviting God to reveal His truth for me.
I had no idea at the time that the verse I selected would become a life verse; one that remained as an area of focus long past one single year.
I have studied this scripture in every translation I can find, looked up countless commentaries on it and referred to it in many presentations and discussions. It is rich with meaning and is always the place I am lead back to when I am beginning a new stage of my journey with God.
It should come as no surprise to me then that, once again, this piece of scripture is revealing something new
Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek His will in all you do
and He will show you which path to take.
Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT
T(rust) Trust in the LORD. Trust that His way, His timing, and His plan is for us and for our good. Our choice to trust Him plants a seed for peace within our lives.
H(eart): with all your Heart: We cannot worry and worship at the same time. Building peace starts with Trust, and continues with choosing to believe He is all He says He is, instead of worrying over His plans and timing. Our seed for peace is nourished as we make the choice to fill our hearts with His truth instead of worries and fears.
A(cknowledge): do not depend on your own understanding: God knows better than we do. Our understanding is limited in its wisdom, but God's is unlimited. He does know better, but if we're worrying over whether or not He does, our heart is clouded, and there is no peace. When we start with trust, followed by filling our heart with Him and surrendering our will to His, our seed of peace begins to grow.
N(ot Me): Seek His will in all you do: Who's in charge? This conflict within us that causes the chaos we feel is caused, in part, by our desire to be in charge. When we choose to trust His way, filling our heart with the promises of His Word so that we do not worry, and acknowledging He knows better, we can surrender our will to His, nurturing His seed for peace within us and helping it to grow stronger within us.
K(now): He will show you: So often we have our own ideas of what our path is supposed to look like. We rely on comparison and false ideals to bring us where we want to go. Trusting with all our hearts, choosing to focus on God's Word, acknowledging our limited knowledge and surrendering our desire to be in control allows us to let God lead us where He wants us to go, creating an opportunity for peace to bud in our lives and in all the relationships we are involved in.
S(ubmit): which path to take. While God may show us the next step on His path, we still have to choose to follow where He is leading. The way may look unclear, or not at all what we would want, but our choice to submit to his way or not makes a difference. This is why the verse begins with Trust; when our hearts are filled with His truth, acknowledging He knows better than we do what's best for us (or our marriage, or our kids, or our work, etc.), and choosing to let Him be in charge and believing He will lead us well, the choice to submit is easy, completing the growth of peace in our life no matter what we are facing.
The result of a life lived in T.H.A.N.K.S is the presence of not only peace, but all the fruit of the Spirit. We are given the ability to see our lives through God's eyes and, even when we do not completely understand, because we are committed to trusting Him, we can thank Him for all we face, allowing love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control to flow from us.
You can create an environment within your heart for God's peace to grow. Will you choose to engage in T.H.A.N.K.S. so it can?
Join the conversation: What is one area of your life that can use some T.H.A.N.K.S so that peace can grow?