Our theme for this month: “Changing the tone of the conversation”
Our Bible verse for today: “Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Stay calm and pray about it.”
It’s often difficult to remain calm in tense situations, especially if that tense situation is a heated conversation about an issue you care deeply about. In such cases it’s not uncommon for tempers to rise, emotions begin to boil, and the situation begins to spiral out of control. The key is to pray about it and to stay calm.
Yesterday I told you the story about Nelson Mandela and how it was that one of his outstanding character traits was his ability to remain balanced, measured, and controlled in his thinking, decision-making, speaking, and actions. I want to continue that discussion today.
In tense or turbulent situations it’s imperative for us to stay calm and in control. Lose control and you lose the situation. Your ability to control yourself and to stay calm helps to keep everyone else calm as well. Fear and anxiety are contagious, but so is a confident sense of calm and control. This is one of the most important traits of a leader. Army General and former Secretary of State in the George W. Bush administration, Colin Powell, is another one of the leaders I admire. He had a long list of what he called “Powell’s Principles”. It was a list of the leadership principles he considered to be most important for any successful leader. One of them was, “Never let them see you sweat.”
When I was a young naval officer I was trained to be the Officer of the Deck on an aircraft carrier. I was the guy who stood on the bridge, binoculars poised, looking like Admiral Halsey, saying, “Helmsman, right full rudder. Steady on course 180”, and cool stuff like that. A principle that was drilled into those of us trained for that position was what was called “Command Presence”. “Command Presence” was an image you needed to project that you were calm and in control at all times. Internally your mind might be racing and your heart might be pounding, but outwardly, as far as anyone else could see, you were a rock.
All of us need to learn how to be calm and in control. Paul teaches in Philippians 4:6-7 that we are to pray about all things. So bring those tense situations to the Lord and ask Him to give you a sense of calmness, control, and peace. Ask Him to help you be the one who calms things down and who has a positive influence on everyone else. Just stay calm and pray about it.
Oak Hill Baptist Church · 3036 Genesis Road · Crossville, Tn 38571 · USA