I’ve been thinking about writing a book with this title, so I researched other books of the same title. One is by an interior decorator, discussing artful placement of one’s stuff in one’s home. One’s about genetics and DNA. And another is about incorporating one’s experiences into a meaningful whole.
But what I want to write about is stuff like peace, freedom, meaning, joy. The stuff we want, no matter how much “stuff” we have (or don’t have). We could sit by the pool with a fancy drink and a hefty portfolio every evening, but be coiled up inside. Without peace, you know…
I started having peace when I got fed up. This was a few years ago. I was by myself, simmering in my usual “I’m not good enough” stuff. But not only that, I was simmering in frustration, even though I have a nice life. Somehow, I had gotten the “such a worm as I” message but never fully got the “you are loved” message. Getting fed up means I told myself to stop the nonsense and believe the latter. Period. So I got up and started believing it until I started believing it.
Sometimes we have to let go of the doorknob before we can cross the room.
It took an act of rebellion against myself to accept God’s peace. I wonder if that’s the case with all the stuff we want. You read about people who find inner freedom while in prison. You read about those who find meaning in the smallest things. And joy? It took C.S. Lewis by surprise.
I don’t know if there’s a magic formula to getting this kind of stuff, but letting go seems to play a part. We strive and strive for stuff, external and internal, but there’s a beauty in ceasing to strive. “Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
Somehow, it seems to be a gateway.