Jesus said “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you… Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not let them be afraid” (John 14:27). When I write this, in the wake the actions of white supremacists in Charlottesville and Islamic terrorists in Barcelona, I am troubled and afraid, and the peace that Jesus promises seems in short supply.
But in faith we do believe this. We wish each other peace every Sunday. This peace does not come from pretending that all is right with the world. Nor is it a peace that depends on the strength to enforce it. It is the peace that comes from Jesus who lived and died in weakness and service. Jesus is our companion, our guide and our hope, even when we are in the in the middle on conflict. It comes from the love of God that extends to all people, including those with whom we disagree, and ourselves when we fail to live out the peace that we are given. This peace is from the one who said “Love your enemies.”
Jesus has won the victory and is reigning as our king. His peace is there, available to us. We need to seek it out, draw it out and make it pivotal in our lives. Out of that hope is born.
O God, it is your will to hold both heaven and earth in a single peace. Let the design of your great love shine on the waste of our wraths and sorrows, and give peace to your church, peace among nations, peace in our homes, and peace in our hearts; through your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. (BAS p. 677)
With love and prayers,
~ The Ven. Kathy Bowman