Tick. Tick. Tick. The waiting room clock drew my attention to the obvious: I wished we weren’t there. Me in the silence and she surrounded by machines. The day before we were laughing in the coffee shop; a happier day for my friend and me.
I hoped that knowing I was waiting for her when she got out would bring comfort to my friend. Yet, when I heard her voice coming down the hall, I was thrown off by her tone. Having just finished her testing, her voice was not that of a fearful woman facing the unknown. And as her face came into view, her expression was not the look of a woman filled with uncertainty. Her countenance radiated one thing: peace. Complete and utter peace.
As I drew near to offer my support, hope spilled through her words, “Before we go, please let me share with you the words Jesus has been whispering to me.”
Taking a seat in that hospital lounge, my friend knew just where to go in God’s word. She had been soaking her heart in the familiar passage all week. Pouring her faith into me, it was all I could do to hold back the tears. Wasn’t I there to support her? Hadn’t I come to hug her when the tests were done? Yet, it was her words, filled with God’s words that were the life giving ones.
My friend was living out Psalm 119:165, “Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble.” (NIV)
There is something otherworldly being in the presence of one who has faced what we all may fear, touched God there and is no longer afraid of the pain this life might hold. I haven’t experienced that level of fear before. I haven’t paid the price to grasp the peace she holds today. But I want it; want the peace she has. I want my heart to be ok with anything that comes my way because my heart is peacefully resting in a God I know is good.
No matter what.
Jesus says He will give us a peace that passes all understanding. His touch isn’t effected by our fear. I saw that peace, literally saw it with my eyes, in my gorgeous friend that morning. I witnessed the beauty that can only come when a woman is daily saturated in the word of God.
It’s a beauty so gorgeous it’s much more than a face in the mirror.
It’s a beauty I want.
I most likely will not experience the exact pain she has experienced. But I can still become beautiful like her.
I know what I have to do to get it; to be like my friend.
I become beautiful like my friend by practicing being in God’s presence as she does; learning to daily “love his law” as the Psalmist said. Getting alone, going to that place, every day, where His word gets in me and I get in God. Setting aside all else, so His peace can seep into all the places of my heart. Allowing His peace to wedge out all fear.
My friend isn’t beautiful because of her oh-so-cute hairstyle or her trendy outfit, though she has those too. My friend is lovely because she has found Jesus’ peace in spite of the pain. I want true beauty like that. The beauty of the fruit of the Spirit.
Galatians 5:22-23, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” (NIV)
Jesus, this world tries to daily define beauty for us. Magazines and make-up ads constantly scream at us “more, more, more”. Your beauty, though, is a gentle peace, even when our world may be spinning. Lord, may we be desperate to become the women You long for us to be; women who radiate You to all we come in contact with. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.\
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