How to Keep Peace When It Comes to Your Family | alyssajhoward.com

How to Keep Peace When It Comes to Your Family

You don’t get to choose your family. I can clearly see this truth in my daughters. When my youngest daughter was born, she was born into an already established family with a built-in big sister who didn’t like her much at first! Now, they love each other. They fight like sisters naturally do, yes. But they miss each other desperately when they’re apart.

As we grow older, our families become more complicated. We gain more and more extended family members, and people go through “phases” of life that can sometimes be not so pleasant to witness or endure. Unfortunately, tragedy can strike, bad decisions are occasionally made, and feelings are sometimes hurt. So what then? How do we handle these things as a family? How do we keep peace as Christians? Continue Reading

How to Transform Your Home Into a Place of Peace | alyssajhoward.com

How to Transform Your Home Into a Place of Peace

Do you ever feel like your days are non-stop go, go, go until bed time? Oh my goodness! How I feel this way on most days! We have our to-do lists that are a mile long. House cleaning, cooking, homeschooling, kids’ activities, family time… we all have our “stuff” that keeps us busy. But is this the way God intended for us to live our lives?  Continue Reading

How to Find Peace When You're Raising Little Ones (who like to be noisy) | alyssajhoward.com

How to Find Peace When You’re Raising Little Ones (who like to be noisy)

My life before children was rather quiet. Calm. Peaceful. Sure, at the time I would have said that I was busy and things were chaotic. But I had NO CLUE what I was in for when I had two little girls 19 months apart. My life was suddenly much different. One baby was easy compared to two… I loved these little human beings more than anything. But how was I going to survive raising little ones?!
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How to Find Peace in Your Marriage | alyssajhoward.com

How to Find Peace in Your Marriage

Marriage is bound to have moments of unrest. It doesn’t take long after the wedding day to figure out that marriage can have its difficulties. It’s inevitable for every couple to disagree or argue. But what if I told you that peace was indeed possible in your marriage? Continue Reading

3 Reasons Why Peace and Joy Go Hand-in-Hand | alyssajhoward.com

3 Reasons Why Peace and Joy Go Hand-in-Hand

One thing we all have in common as human beings is our desire for happiness. Sure, we may go about it differently. Some of us try to find it in relationships, while others look to a career or financial security to provide happiness. Either way, we all want to be happy. But did you know that peace and joy go hand-in-hand? Think about it this way. If you are uneasy or stressed it is much harder to be truly happy. More often than not, joy and contentment work together in our lives. Continue Reading

Why You Need God's Peace to Accomplish Your Destiny | alyssajhoward.com

Why You Need God’s Peace to Accomplish Your Destiny

If I were to ask you what it takes to accomplish your destiny, what would you say? What first comes to mind? Hard work. Dedication. A plan of action. What about peace? Does peace even come to mind? Probably not. But the truth is that God’s peace is an essential part of walking in our God-given identities. And if you’re not walking in your true identity, accomplishing much for the Kingdom will be extremely difficult… if not impossible. Continue Reading

Do You Desire to Have Peace Beyond Understanding?

Do you long to experience God’s peace? I think it’s safe to say that we all desire peace in our lives… but peace beyond understanding is something entirely different. God’s peace is beyond understanding because the world can’t understand how we can be at peace in the middle of a storm. And let’s face it. Storms happen. There’s no such thing as a life without hardships and struggles. So when God promises us peace in the midst of these trials, it’s a promise that seems almost too good to be true. Continue Reading

Peace on Earth: 3 Ways to Choose Peace This Holiday Season | alyssajhoward.com

Peace on Earth: 3 Ways to Choose Peace This Holiday Season

I absolutely love the holiday season. We get to celebrate, drink hot chocolate, decorate, shop ’til we drop, and spend time with family and friends. And did I mention Christmas carols? With so much to enjoy, it’s easy to take it all for granted. This season can be the “most wonderful time of the year,” but it can also be the most stressful. Peace on earth, good will to men. I was thinking about this common phrase we sing around Christmas time, and I couldn’t shake it from my mind. Continue Reading

Positive Thinking Was God's Design | alyssajhoward.com

Positive Thinking Was God’s Design

The world knows that positive thinking is good for us. Nearly every self-help book on the market will tell you that your mind plays a crucial role in shaping not only your life, but also your health.

I used to believe that positive thinking belonged to the world. I would see “positive” encouragements online (with the absence of God of course) and think to myself how wrong the whole positive thinking movement is. The problem with that, however, is that positive thinking was God’s idea first. The world simply took a spiritual truth, removed God, and packaged it up for everyone who needed it.

It caught on, because it works. And it works, because it’s a God-given spiritual truth.

 

Paul describes the mind of the believer in his letter to the Philippians:

 

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things. – Philippians 4:4-8 (HCSB)

 

We are called to think about what is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, and commendable – and not just think about them but dwell on them. Speaking from experience, it’s not easy to keep my mind positive all day, every day. In fact, it’s downright hard sometimes – especially during difficult circumstances. But I truly believe that God’s desire for our minds is that we learn to replace our negative thoughts with positive thoughts – that we fill our mind with His truth, His love, and His peace. Continue Reading

Brothers and Sisters in Christ: How to Keep Peace in the Family of God

When my youngest was born, her older sister wasn’t too happy. She certainly had moments when she was intrigued by this new little person, but a new sister meant that life would never be the same. She now had to share everything… mom and dad, grandma and grandpa, time, attention, toys, etc. This new sibling brought a lot of big changes to her world.

For the first couple of years, my oldest struggled to adjust. Her younger sibling cried a lot and needed a lot of my attention. I knew that one day she would see the benefit of having a younger sister. They would grow up together, be each other’s best friend, laugh with one another, and lean on each other through tough times.

As a mother, I would think about the day when they would be bridesmaids in each other’s weddings or when they would call each other as adults for advice. Isn’t this what we all want for our kids?

 

Brothers and Sisters in Christ: How to Keep Peace in the Family of God | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading

Walking Hand in Hand with Our Father We Find Everything We Need

I love holding hands with my toddlers. Their hands feel so small in my hand. When they hold my hand, I feel needed and loved. I get to protect them and keep them close. I get to lead them where I need them to go and keep them from wandering off. And I know that they sense this protection as well. They desire to be close to me when faced with new situations. They want to feel safe, and they feel safest when they are at my side.

 

Walking Hand in Hand with Our Father We Find Everything We Need | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading

Armor of God: Shoes of Peace

What do shoes and peace have in common? Not much on the surface. Yet Paul tells Christians in Ephesians 6 to wear “shoes of peace” as part of our spiritual armor. (Ephesian 6:15)

When it comes to armor in general, the term “peace” doesn’t usually spring to mind. After all, armor is generally worn during times of war – not times of peace. So why would Paul tell us to wear peace when facing the enemy in warfare?

 

Armor of God: Shoes of Peace | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading