Welcome to Part 3 of Book Club Time: Searching for and Maintaining Peace: A Small Treatise on Peace of Heart. Do not let the small size of this book fool you. Jacques Philippe packs so much instruction and wisdom into each word. Part one and two of my Book Club Time notes can be found here and here.
Book Club Time
*Direct quotes are bold and my notes and reflections follow.
Keep your heart open and always in the hands of Divine Providence, whether for great things or for small, and obtain for your heart more and more the spirit of gentleness and tranquility. We are all called to great things. It’s the interpretation of what makes a thing “great” that trips us up right? Praying outside the abortion mill or working the soup kitchen is a great good. But what if it comes at the expense of our family? (Who is My Neighbor?) Sometimes the greater good is calmly and sweetly putting the toddler back into bed for nap time after the fifth “I need a dwink.” Sometimes the greatest thing we can do is listen to our husband’s day intently without telling him all the things that went wrong in our day. One time a wise spiritual father told me, “Don’t go looking for extra sacrifices or crosses. Do what you are supposed to be doing instead and you will find them.”
If I am still not able to remain at peace when faced with difficult situations, then it is better that I should begin to strive to keep this peace in the easier situations of everyday life: to quietly and without irritability do my daily chores, to commit myself to doing each thing well in the present moment without preoccupying myself with what follows, to speak peacefully and with gentleness to those around me, to avoid excessive hurry in my gestures and in the way I climb the stairs. This goes along with the wise counsel I just shared. Jacques Philippe continues…Small things done with love and to please God are extremely beneficial in making us grow…
Must one run from evil? It must be done peacefully, without being troubled, otherwise, in fleeing, we could fall and give the enemy the leisure to do us in. This a quote from Francis de Sales the author shared. Years ago I suffered with anxiety attacks. I would feel one begin to come on and I would get scared because I knew what was coming–the physical pain and emotional distress. And the anxiety attack would be so.much.worse!! Eventually, there came a time when I began to feel the anxiety rising, I could stop and say–sometimes out loud even–“I know what this is. This is only anxiety. I am not going to die. I am not going to lose my mind. I’m going to think about (fill in the blank) instead…or I’m going to tackle the tile in the shower; it’s gross and needs my attention.” This took work, to be able to flee these anxious thoughts–calmly. But it made all.the.difference.
If you are struggling with fear and anxiety, I HIGHLY recommend you get Searching for and Maintaining Peace: A Small Treatise on Peace of Heart. This book along with my Bible and The 4:8 Principle: The Secret to a Joy-Filled Life were important tools in helping me to change my thinking habits.
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