By Dawn R. Ward
Is your home a safe place, a refuge from the storms of life? We desire our homes to be a place to escape from the busyness and cares of the world, where we can relax and enjoy peaceful tranquility.
But when things get chaotic, how do you keep the peace in your home?
My house has not always been a place of peace. Our family has been adversely affected by addiction. Along with the devastation it brings into the life of the addicted loved one, it tears at the very core of the family unit.
One day things will be calm and feel almost normal. The next, a tsunami blows through our home, leaving total devastation in its wake.
While you may not be living with the chaos of addiction, peace can be hard to maintain in any household. Otherwise, healthy families will need to work to maintain peace in their homes in a world of constant turmoil.
Building strong families who cohabitate in peace should be the goal for all Christian marriages and parents. But doing so can be harder than it seems.
Craving Peace in the Chaos
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (ESV)
Ask anyone you know well or even a stranger the following question. “Who sets the overall mood of the home environment? Unanimously, most will answer, “The mom or wife.” They got that right.
Women have a special gift for cultivating a peaceful home environment. While we can’t control or regulate the moods of each member of the family, we can influence them by example through our words and actions.
5 Ways to Maintain Peace in Your Home
Here are five ways to keep peace in our homes when life is stressful.
- Establish a daily routine.
There is nothing more stressful than a chaotic environment, one that lacks order and routine. Sure, there will be days when you will feel like throwing your daily planner out the window, but a flexible, well-planned schedule goes far in maintaining a peaceful home life. “But all things should be done decently and in order.” 1 Corinthians 14:40 (ESV)
- Do a personal heart check.
It’s easy to start the day off on the wrong foot. Or it might begin smoothly, but soon a series of unexpected interruptions cause you to feel stressed out. Prepare your heart for those stressors by doing a heart check throughout the day. Ask the Lord to reveal any areas of worry, fear or anxiety. Confess your concerns to him and ask for his help in maintaining a peaceful attitude. (See Philippians 4:6-7)
- Get rid of negative thoughts and words.
Think before you speak. Check the motivation behind your thoughts. Is it loving and peaceful or frustrated and hurtful? The tone and attitude we have when speaking to our family can say much more than the actual words themselves. Take a breather if necessary to avoid speaking words you might later regret. (See Proverbs 18:21, 23:7)
- Pray for peace in your home.
Prayer is a powerful tool when fighting for the peace of your home and family. The Bible teaches we should seek the Lord for our peace because he is our peace. “Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.” 2 Thessalonians 3:16 (ESV)
- Be a peacemaker, not a peace-breaker. It’s important to choose your battles wisely when pursuing peace in your home. Don’t sweat the small stuff. If you burned dinner, but your family still got fed, don’t let it rob your peace. Same with the dust bunnies. Don’t let them stress you out. Some things aren’t worth losing your peace over. (See John 14:27)
Learning now to cultivate a peaceful home environment can be challenging, especially if there are other family members causing disruption. Remember, you can only do your part. But your words are influential, and your prayers are powerful as you seek to keep the peace in your home.
Wife Step: Pray for peace in your home and relationships every day for thirty days.
Dawn Ward is a speaker, writer and blogger. She is the founder of The Faith to Flourish, a ministry that equips women who desire to grow in their faith, cultivate healthy relationships and thrive in all seasons of life. She also ministers to women with loved ones struggling with addiction, mental health issues and life-destructive behaviors. Dawn is the co-author of the book “Still Standing After All the Tears Workbook: Faith in the Battle Edition. She has been married to her husband, Steve, for over forty years and is mom to three adult children. It is her passion to help all women grow in their faith as they learn to better understand the Bible and how to apply it to their lives.