I’ve really been enjoying Searching for and Maintaining Peace: A Small Treatise on Peace of Heart by Fr. Jacques Philippe. Here are few excerpts that I hope will help you look for and attain peace-real peace-in your day today.
In order to understand how fundamental it is for the development of the Christian life to strive to acquire and maintain peace of heart, the first thing of which we must be convinced is that all the good that we do comes from God and from Him alone: Apart from Me, you can do nothing, Jesus said (John 15:5).
We often have to experience failures, trials and humiliations, permitted by God, before this truth imposes itself on us, not only on an intellectual level, but as an experience of our entire being. God would spare us, if He could, all these trials, but they are necessary in order that we should be convinced of our complete powerlessness to do good by ourselves.
I struggle with maintaining peace, especially in the midst of highly stressful situations (which happen often around here!) And these words struck me hard. I try to do so much on my own. And then I get all stressed out when things don’t happen as I want them too. I hate stress I try hard to avoid it but then that turns into indecisiveness and agitation which just brings me back to stress and all other antonyms of peace. The more I struggle the harder it is for me to find peace. Like my wise friend, Mary, pointed out, it’s hard to just sit back give God our absolute trust and faith in prayer without feeling like we are doing nothing if we don’t do something to ‘fix’ things that are ‘broken’ in our lives or others lives . Yet, if I can just be still and listen and let the Holy Spirit breath in me and speak to me, then peace will come and then I can share this peace with others.
The more our soul is peaceful and tranquil, the more God is reflected in it, the more His image expresses itself in us, the more His grace acts through us. On the other hand, if our soul is agitated and troubled, the grace of God is able to act only with much greater difficulty. All the good that we can do is the Essential Good, which is God. The more our soul is peaceful, balanced and surrendered, the more this Good communicates itself to us and to others through us.
God is a God of peace. He…[is] in the whisper of a gentle breeze (cf. 1 Kings 19)!
…For thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel: By waiting and by calm you shall be saved; in quiet and in trust your strength lies…(Isaiah 30:15).
I pray you will have a peaceful night and a peaceful day.