On Peace


This is the third part of a short series on presence, patience, and peace - three words that have been instrumental in my spiritual formation. I first wrote about presence. When we choose to be present, it becomes the soil in which patience can grow, and ultimately these two circle back and forth, each feeding off the other, into a powerful cycle of growth.


Long-term peace doesn't just spring up out of nowhere, and it doesn't come for free. We have to live our way into it.

Presence and patience involve choices and intentionality. But peace is different. We cannot manufacture peace. I think this is why Paul calls it peace that transcends all understanding (Phil 4:7). The only way to let the blossom of peace grow is to continue watering the soil of presence and pruning the branches of patience. Although we might be blessed with a supernatural peace during a specific situation, long-term peace doesn’t just spring up out of nowhere, and it doesn’t come for free. We have to live our way into it.


People who are a “presence of peace” are never self-centered, because peaceful people have de-centered their own egos and self interests by choosing presence and patience. In other words, their universe no longer orbits around them.


So what does this look like?


  • When you have peace, your mind is set free from the heavy weight of unfulfilled expectations.

  • When you have peace, you are able to be a "non-anxious presence" in any situation

  • When you have peace, you learn to stop, take a deep breath, and remember the big picture.

  • When you have peace, you can see the forest and the trees.

  • When you have peace, speed bumps are opportunities to slow down.

  • When you have peace, flat tires are opportunities to stop and fix something.

  • When you have peace, thunderstorms are opportunities to dance in the rain.

  • When you have peace, you are able to accept everything as it is and for what it is.


I think this last one is perhaps the most profound, but please let me clarify: by “accept” I do not mean that there is no need for change or room for growth. I don’t mean that all things are perfect just the way they are. That wouldn’t be peace; that would be apathy. And peace-filled people are never apathetic; because apathy isn’t peace. It’s just giving up.

Peace-filled people are never apathetic, because apathy isn't peace. It's just giving up.

Peace-filled people are always ready for action, just as they are ready for rest, but they have the ability to see better than most both when and how to take action. They are no longer at the center of their own universe, and a de-centered ego is essential for real peace.


People who are a “presence of peace” are never self-centered, because peaceful people have de-centered their own egos and self interests by choosing presence and patience. In other words, their universe no longer orbits around them.

Painting credit: Omran, a 15 year old Lebanese boy in our residential program

©2019 by Corey Farr.