Peace... A little word with a big result. If you have ever lived a period of time without it, then you have found out the hard way that PEACE IS PRICELESS. It's hard to put a price-tag on peace.
Think about it this Holiday season, Jesus was born to bring us peace.
"For unto us a child is born...and He will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6
The Prince of Peace. What a title that is!
After fulfilling His ministry on earth when Jesus spoke to His disciples before ascending into heaven, He shared the gift He was leaving behind...
"Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you." John 14:27
Jesus could've left any gift. He chose to leave us peace because He knew we would need it more than anything.
There is a calm spot in the middle of storms. A place where there is peace. Maybe you are in the middle of a mess. Have you found your sweet spot? The place where there is peace even though your world may not be right around you.
My prayer for you this season is that if you don't have peace, you would pursue it and if you have peace, you would protect it!
"...seek peace and pursue it." Psalm 34:14b
Wishing you tidings of comfort and joy,
Tiffany Jo Baker MA, CLC
P.S. If you are tired of the emotional roller-coaster and ready for more peace, I have something that will help you. A 4 week faith based mini e-course where you can learn how to apply the simple 3 step process that God gives us for having and keeping peace. Your life and journey will never be the same. Find out more here.
Are you a people watcher? Sometimes I just love to sit on a bench in the mall, at a park or in an airport and just watch people. I wonder who they are, where they are going and what has happened in their life. You can assume a lot from people watching. I often look for people who look happy. Those that are really being present in the moment and enjoying their life. You can see those that are sad, frustrated, stressed and happy. I have lived long enough to know that a smile can mask a lot.
According to a 2017 Harris Poll only 33% of Americans said they were happy. That's only 1/3 of our neighbors, church friends, co-workers and family. This is a sad statistic, but also probably very realistic. So many of us are going through the motions, striving, working, living, loving, but we are missing a crucial part of life...joy.
The reality is so disheartening and detrimental that the field of Psychology is beginning to understand the importance of happiness. There is a new branch of Psychology called Positive Psychology- the science of happiness. This isn't the surface level of happiness that we are used to hearing about, but the deeper form that we believers know as joy.
God made us to enjoy life. The words joy, rejoice and joyful appear 430 times in the Bible (ESV).
There are so many health benefits. According to Positive Psychology happiness and laughter:
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Proverbs 17:22
One study shows when people watch a funny move, their blood vessels open and their blood flows more freely. Another study shows that 40% of Americans rarely engage in hobbies and past-times they enjoy.
So here are some ways to increase laughter in your life:
1. Call your funny friend, or the 1 that loves to laugh too.
2. Go see a funny movie.
3. Try something fun and new and laugh along the way.
Jewish Proverb- "As soap is to the body, so laughter is to the soul."
Maybe you are in a valley right now and you can't even imagine laughing until you pee your pants. Where do you start? Spend time with God. I know this sounds so easy and trite, but it really is the answer to most of our stuff. Psalms 16:11 says, "You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand."
We are filled with joy in His presence. It's a deeply spiritual, yet basic foundational benefit to our salvation and relationship with the Lord.
So today, I wish you happiness, laughter, and joy. Find your funny again. Get your joy back. If you have it already, protect it at all cost.
The joy of the Lord is your strength! Nehemiah 8:10
Tiffany Jo Baker MA, CLC
Tiffany Jo Baker is a 3x surrogate, speaker, coach, confidante and cheerleader to help you birth your dreams.