2016: Page 271

Page 271 was a long workday, which was probably just as well considering all the “expert” commentary about last night’s presidential debate that was flooding my social media wall tonight.  My friends seem to cover the full spectrum of political ideology so my online “wall” is covered with every response imaginable — but even more responses that I wouldn’t have imagined.  As I read the animosity conveyed from just about every angle possible, I have to conclude that it is no wonder we are where we are as a nation and it really has very little to do with any of the political candidates.  But today’s page isn’t about the debate or any individual’s or group’s response to it.  No, today’s page is about it being well with my soul regardless of whether I have peace like a river or face sorrow that rages like the billowing sea.

After missing my wake-up time yesterday, I set the alarm for this morning and made it to work by 6 AM to get the cleaning and building prep done.  Once the early morning tasks were complete, I spent some time putting together the general plan for the 1st through 3rd grade Bible class I’ll teach tomorrow evening.  My morning and early afternoon was spent working on that lesson, proofreading the draft copy of my new book, “Serving God”, and taking care of some building issues.  By mid-afternoon, it was time to get some lunch and call it a day as far as work was concerned.  On my way out, a service tech showed up to work on our outside lighting.  I had been leaving messages with them for  awhile now, so it was important that I made sure the work got done while they were here — so much for lunch. 🙂  After the lighting issues were taken care of, it was time to head home.  It was late enough, and close enough to dinner time, that it didn’t make much sense to stop for dinner.  Once home, I sat down to unwind and found the lack of civility online to be somewhat disturbing — even if not all that surprising.

As I thought about the day, and even about some of what is going on in our nation, this photo I took last night called for my attention.  One of my all-time favorite songs is the hymn, “It Is Well With My Soul”.  Today’s picture represents a time when most people find it easy to say it is well with their soul — the “peace like a river” times of life.  More difficult for most of us is to have an inner peace like this river when the world around us is filled with great turmoil.  Too often, we find ourselves riding out the billowing waves of the raging sea only to have that same rage reflected in our life rather than the peace God wants to fill us with.  The sorrow we feel over watching our nation move away from God seems to create an anger in many people that they don’t know what to do with.  Unfortunately, social media gives us an unfettered outlet for our anger which allows us to say things we would soon regret if we actually heard them coming from our mouth.  Even in these tumultuous times, God wants to fill us with a peace that can only come through the power and presence of His Spirit within us.

I pray that you and I would seek to live at peace with all people as far as it depends upon us.  I pray that we would guard our words — both spoken and shared online.  I pray that we would pursue God as the only hope for true peace in anyone’s life.  I pray that we would know that it is well with our soul in all circumstances because of our relationship with Jesus.


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