2/17/10

How to Become a Serene Woman

When I think of the word “serene,” only a few women come to mind (although I am sure there are others). My mother-in-love is a serene woman. So is the woman I work for and a few precious friends.

I am serene, too—maybe once or twice a year. (But it is one of my goals!) Who would not want to be labeled serene? A serene woman is calm, peaceful, and tranquil. Think of an unruffled lake, still and lovely.

It was hard to be serene when I was a young mom, zipping around the house picking up my boys socks and husband’s newspapers, and washing load after load of laundry. It seemed I moved from one chore to another, tearing around the house. It was hard to be serene when my sons were in high school—running off to ball games, leaving dishes in the sink and always feeling behind in my work. It’s still hard to be serene, even with an empty nest. I have a full plate of responsibilities, deadlines, and expectations.

Being serene does not mean we are wimps, boring, or unmotivated. An extrovert can be as serene as an introvert. Serenity is an inner attitude before it is an action. At every season of life, serenity will escape us if we don’t take quiet moments of reflection and refreshing for ourselves, and even more quiet time to build our relationship with God (Psalm 46:10).

I need to stop in the midst of my scurrying to sip a cup of tea, walk the dog, take a leisurely bath, journal my thoughts or a new Truth learned; enjoy a sunrise or sunset, read by a scented candle, or, with my eyes closed, drink in beautiful, heart-stirring music. But serenity based on pampering the flesh is not sufficient for my soul. I desperately need a slow conversation with God and His Truth breathed deeply into my life. How else will I know the peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7)?

To become serene:
(1) Recognize that you need serenity moments each day.
(2) Choose some relaxing activities that encourage tranquility in your life (and don’t feel guilty taking time for them).
(3) Take care of unnecessary stressors (get out of debt, end destructive habits, etc.).
(4) Respond to circumstances gracefully and confidently, trusting that they are “Father-filtered” because God loves you! (Romans 8:28; 8:37-39; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; 12:9-10)
(5) Rely on God’s presence, power, and provision (Hebrews 13:5; Philippians 4:13; 4:19), and rest in Him (Psalm 37:7)
(6) Learn contentment (1 Timothy 6:6)
(7) Cultivate a grateful spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
(8) Choose joy because of your hope in Christ (I Peter 1:3-7).

Serenity does not just happen. It is a gift we give ourselves and a blessing we cultivate each day by the choices we make.

Want to read more? The opposite of serenity is the frantic fluttering of a busy little bird. Read about that in "My Little Hummingbird."

2 comments:

crazydaisy said...

I like that list! I long to be serene!!!!

Marja said...

Great post Dawn!! Thanks!
May I add nr. 9?
"turn the televison off"