Scrolling through my Facebook feed last night, my friend, Rhonda’s, post stopped my scroll. With her permission, I’m sharing it. It read, “Calm is Contagious.”
I’ve had plenty of moments in the last week when calm wasn’t the word you would have used to describe me. In those moments I was anything but calm. Hopefully you’ve done better at this than I have. Oh, I still have my moments every now and then. But, when they come, two things tend to calm me down. My husband and God’s Word.
We continue to hear about how contagious this virus is. And, I trust the experts who say so. I’m not messing around with proving them wrong. Like you or maybe those you love, I’ve been holed up here at home for days. The only time I escaped was when Bill and I took dinner and a few other things to our son Tuesday evening. He lives an hour north of us. And, little did I realize then, I wouldn’t be leaving my house after that any time soon. So yes, I respect that this virus is contagious.
But, calm is contagious, too.
You, as well as I, know full well other things are contagious, too. Goodness gracious! One person got panicky about toilet paper, and look what happened across the majority of our country! Within a matter of days, the toilet paper shelves in stores were empty! So yes, panic is contagious. Fear is contagious. Worry is contagious. So are anxiousness and feelings of uncertainty. But, also contagious is calm, trust, peace, rest, and hope.
I like those last five words much better. This is a good time to check ourselves.
So, with what are you and I contagious?
With what kinds of thoughts and attitudes are we consciously or unconsciously sharing with others? What are you and I displaying to others? Are we contagious with panic and fear, or with calm, trust, peace, rest, and hope?
The thing is, when we are calm, others can’t help but be calmed. When we’re panicked, others pick that up from us, too, and become panicked. If we set the tone of calm and cool, others will follow. Try it in your home tonight and see what happens.
But, how do we set this tone of calm? One particular Bible verse stood out to me in my devotion time this morning. It’s about the calm that appears when we let Jesus take our worries and anxious thoughts. It’s Philippians 4:6-8. Let’s read it together in The Message translation:
Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.Philippians 4:6-8 MSG
It’s beautiful, isn’t it?
This is how we become calm. When we fill our minds and meditate on things that are true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling and gracious. The NIV translation says it like this: Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
What do you think would happen if we read this passage daily? If we prayed it? If we believed it? And, most importantly, if we lived it out to shine bright in this world? I think you and I would be filled with calm.
Praying we can each be filled with calm today to give that out to others!