2011 was the Year of Peace. I have been doing themes since 2005, and the one consistency is this: they never turn out how I plan them to.
When I was given the word peace, I was hoping for a year with less obstacles than prior years. I was hoping for a year where the issues in our lives that cause us pain would be resolved, leaving us in peace. I hoped for those things, yes, but I did not expect them to happen. I have learned that my themes, when they sound good, typically require a lot of bad things to happen, thus teaching me more about the good things I desire. For example, in the Year of Freedom, I was first made very aware of the bondage I was living in. I battled hard and waged a war to win my freedom. I expected similar from a year themed peace. Neither my hope nor my expectation proved to be true.
Over the last year, I learned something about peace. As I think over our first year of homeschool, a long hot summer, the snowy days of 2011’s beginning months, doctor’s appointments, medication changes for Haydn and myself, TV shows we watched, movies we saw, books I read, babies born to friends and family, I see a trend. What I have learned about peace in 2011 leads directly to my theme for 2012.
Peace is a decision. In each moment, no matter how heartbreaking and dream shattering, I can choose peace. I cannot create the sun, no, but I can seek out her rays and bask in them. When Haydn is in the middle of a full-on Aspie meltdown and David is vying for my attention and the cats are screeching and the dog is circling my feet and yapping, and Corey is in Memphis for school, and I have no one here to rescue me, I can still choose peace. I can choose it, because peace is not something that exists outside of ourselves, outside of God. Peace is the place inside us where God is present, where the Holy Spirit offers counsel, where we can, like Mary, say “Let it be.”
I can choose this. I can. I know I can. What I can’t seem to master is the how.