How is it with your soul? Are you at peace amid everything swirling around you? For some, 2020 was challenging, but also rewarding. Some businesses grew to experience their best year ever. And, some businesses could not survive the lockdowns and were forced to close the doors. Normally, my spirit is deeply anchored and feels the waves battering the ship, yet the anchor holds firm. I will be honest, today the choppy waves are knocking me down a bit. So, let’s explore what it means to experience peace in spirit.
I realize not all of you listening may believe in the concept of spirit. However, many people believe in the human spirit. What in the world is the spirit? In my world view, spirit equals soul. You will not find the spirit in an autopsy. You cannot surgically remove it. Behavioral and neurological scientists have debated the existence of the spirit or soul for years. In the book, Why God Won’t Go Away: Brain Science and the Biology of Belief by Newberg and d’Aquili, they write about research related to the “soul” or spirit. Fascinating stuff. I believe you are born with a soul you have a soul from the moment of conception. Now, since you have a soul, how do you find peace in your soul or spirit?
Here are 3 tips to creating peace in your spirit:
1. Anchor your Spirit. In Greek, the word spirit is derived from the word for breath, pneuma, often referred to as the breath of life. In Stoic thought, spirit is defined as the vital spirit, soul, or creative force of a person. The spirit needs a focal point, an anchor, a belief that becomes unshakeable. The anchor varies between people and their belief systems. For me, my anchor is Jesus. His anchor has stood the test of time for centuries in the lives of others. Jesus has anchored me for decades giving my spirit focus and purpose. My feelings may vary from day to day, just as I mentioned feeling a bit overwhelmed today. I know those feelings will pass and my anchor will hold.
2. Cultivate your Spirit. I don’t believe you can grow your spirit, but you can cultivate peace in your spirit. For me, that cultivation happens with consistent prayer, meditation, and practicing spiritual disciplines. For others, meditation is the key. Every day I spend time in Bible reading, prayer, journaling, and meditation. I frequently add fasting as well. Practicing these disciplines daily creates a strong sense of peace and calm in my spirit. Once a month, I spend a Day in Prayer. Setting this day aside has been life-changing for me. In the past, I would take a whole week for prayer and solitude. These daily behaviors have created a strong tether between my spirit and my anchor. When the storms of life come and the waves crash over the bow, I am confident my anchor will hold, even if my emotions sway with the waves.
- Protect your Spirit. Protection is different than cultivation. I protect my spirit by limiting exposure to influences that could erode confidence in my anchor or the strength of my tether. I quit watching and reading the news years ago. I admit, this last year with the coronavirus, I did read more news than usual. Now, I have returned to my former habit. I try to stay informed of world events in other ways. I limit my time on social media except communities and groups. I feed my spirit with TED Talks, podcasts, and reading books. I am a non-fiction guy reading books dedicated to learning something new every day. The concept is protection and prevention. Focus on those things that bring peace, joy, and happiness. We entered 2020 planning of what we could gain and finished the year thankful for what we kept.
The world around us continues to grow unstable. We all need an anchor. We all need a strong tether. You can find peace in your spirit. If you need some help, hit me up on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.