Do you remember the ”Keep Calm” posters that gained popularity several years ago? They were a take-off of a test poster created during World War II by the British for Britain’s ”finest hour” ”“ the aerial Battle of Britain in 1940 ”“ 41 when they were the only country left fighting the Third Reich. Interestingly enough the original poster was never mass-produced and didn’t move beyond a creative test. Yet in 2008, the design became hugely popular as it seemed to respond to the Britain credit crunch and banking crash.
The original poster graphic read, ”Keep Calm and Carry On” and seemed fitting to the financial crisis the country experienced in 2008. However, the ”Keep Calm” slogans then morphed worldwide into all sorts of meanings like ”Keep Calm and Dance On,” ”Keep Calm and Camp On,” and even ”Keep Calm and Eat Chocolate” among a plethora of others. These often-funny little take offs though don’t really explore the true meaning of the phrase and the importance of being able to remain calm when the upsets of life occur.
Being able to keep calm and carry on requires a great transformation from an even greater power. Such transformations remind me of a story about a group of fishermen that gathered for tea while discussing the day’s catch in the Scottish Highlands. As the waitress set down a cup of tea, one of the men’s hands accidentally knocked it against the wall. It left an ugly stain. But one of the guests got up and went to the wall. He began immediately sketching around the stain with a crayon. What emerged was a stag with magnificent antlers. This guest was none other than Sir Edwin Landseer, England’s foremost painter of animals. As I read this story, I thought about how an artist can transform an unsightly stain, a blob of paint, or a lump of clay into a beautiful masterpiece with seemingly little effort. But what is even greater is what the master creator can do with broken lives.
It is difficult to ”Keep Calm” when life is breaking into pieces and crumbling around you, much less to do so while ”Keeping Calm and Carrying On.” But when we feel like giving into despair we must reconsider our position and perspective. These are the times to stand still and call on the Lord to relieve us. I don’t know about you, but I often find myself in the desert wandering aimlessly around much like the Israelites. And also like them, I can quickly find myself ready to give up or give in. But with some encouraging words, a positive attitude, and most importantly a trusting belief; it is indeed possible to ”Keep Calm and Carry On.”
Stay Calm but Keep Moving
We must remember that God is in full control. He views things from His perspective and because of this we must submit to His will and not ours. This week’s focus verse finds the people of Israel in full panic. The Egyptians appear to be overtaking them and they cry out to God and blame Moses. How quickly they seem to have forgotten all the recent miracles witnessed as they are ready to give up. Yet Moses tells them in the midst of chaos, ”Just Stay Calm!”
”The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.” Exodus 14:14 (NLT)
Staying Calm isn’t easy when you have problems pounding at the door. But if you will first turn to God and recognize that He is in control, the ability to not panic is obtainable. While materials and ability limit an artist to transform ugly stains, blobs, or lumps into something beautiful our great Creator has unlimited resources to turn our ugly lives of pain and sin into magnificent things.
But ”Keeping Calm and Carrying On” doesn’t mean sitting back and waiting on a rescue. For if you read the next words from God, He tells Moses and the people to get moving! Turning to God and facing your disappointments, issues, and concerns is always first in order but this is not the time to stop and sit down. Instead, it is the time to not only realize that God is in control, but the time to move forward knowing with confidence that God is with you.
The Three C’s
When you turn to God first, it is in the quiet that calmness, confidence, and courage happens. This gives you the ability to battle the fear and gain the courage to let God take full control. Sometimes you must put aside your well-laid plans and allow Him to act. For you have nothing to say to God but thank you as salvation comes from Him alone. You can trust Him and be peacefully confident that He will give you strength to face your difficulties even if an army is marching toward you.
Challenge yourself to trust God to be in full control depending upon His wisdom for your life so that you can ”Keep Calm and Carry On.” Allow your convictions to give you peace and patience as you move forward. Find motivation in a Savior that is not only on your side but fighting for you. Surround yourself with the comfort of knowing that He loves you simply because you are His. Let your mantra be to ”Keep Calm and Carry On” because His blood seals your eternity.
Love in Christ,
Sometimes God calms the storm. Â Sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child
What are Your Thoughts?
Do you find it difficult to ”Keep Calm and Carry on?” Can you get moving in a crisis knowing that God is on your side? Share your thoughts on keeping calm and moving on.