The Peace Umpire
The other morning I woke up all relaxed and unaware ...until the day registered. You've been there. Wishing you could stay in your semi-comotose state before thinking of your day. "I'm moving, and only 40% packed and I'm close to a deadline for my job, and I forgot to sign that paper for my oldest ones class, and and and...."
My brain was swirling and my emotions started to fight with each other and all I wanted was peace.
Briefly in the quiet I read this one sentence and wondered at it but had no time to dig into a few words that hit me. And thought - I'll look into that concept later.
I headed off to my staff meeting where my pastor and long-time friend had written for our morning the exact same sentence on the agenda that I had wondered at. That was a beautiful gift.
It's out of Colossians: Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.
We broke it down:
Let: Allow. It's not a hard command...it's a choice we can make.
Peace: Shalom - wholeness, healthy, harmony, the absence of discord or agitation
Of Christ: Not me trying to muster this up - it's God's
Rule: "Rule - ”literally, "sit as umpire"
I stopped at "rule."
"Let the peace of Christ act as umpire when anger, envy, and such passions arise; and restrain them. Let not those passions give the award, so that you should be swayed by them, but let Christ's peace be the decider of everything." - Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
The Peace Umpire. He calls the shots. He's the final overarching ruling.
Other resources point to the idea that this word "rule" was used to reference the Olympic and other games. "The soul is liable to agitations of passion and excitement - like an assembled multitude of men...but the peace of God will calm down eery agitated element of the soul." - Barnes' Notes on the Bible
Right now it feels like I have the Olympic games going on in my heart! I am SAD about moving. My neighbors and change (change!) and 12 years of love and sweat and memories - sad to leave it. I am PUMPED about our new house and what God has for us with new neighbors. I am enjoying but challenged by the new direction I am helping to lead at our church. My baby girl just turned FOUR. Ummmm....what?! There's a lot.
I need an umpire to make the ruling and tell the hecklers in my heart to shush.
Pipe down, Anxiety. The call stands, Fear. Hey Sadness, your seat is over here.
And that "let" ....it's a hard one. I want to call the shots in my heart. So much rides on the "let."
It's a passive concept - but so much strength is required to walk in the "let." So I am breathing and stopping and repeating this verse.
And I am slowly focusing on the Who of the peace - King Jesus. King's have a reason they reign....and His grace, sovereignty, justice and mercy are a few that help me know His peace.