What is Peace? by Lisa Hunt-Wotton

The seventh verse of the sermon on the mount says:

Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God.

A peace maker is someone who ‘makes’ or ‘creates’ places of peace. They are mediators, counsellors and intercessors.  They are able to reconcile with adversaries. They intervene and intercede. They are bridge builders and wall breakers.

Peacemakers  are called the ‘children of God’ because they directly imitate the nature and character of God.  They walk in his footsteps and exhibit his DNA.

Peace is a fruit of the Spirit.

We are told in the biblical texts to make every effort to live in peace.  We are instructed to seek peace and to pursue it, to chase after it.  Jesus, the Prince of Peace, was sent to lead us into the footsteps of peace.

But what is peace?

Peace intercedes, it negotiates and it reconciles conflict in every arena.  Peace is the desire for us all to get along. Peace is freedom from disturbance, it is emotional calm. Peace is tranquility. Peace is the opposite to anxiety.  Peace is a commitment to understanding, celebrating and learning from difference. Peace is a commitment not to harm, but also to nurture, all individuals.

But it is also much more than all of this.

“One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means.” – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Peace is a direct result of peoples thoughts and actions but it is also a gift from God.

pink-sunset-peace

In the Old Testament, the primary Hebrew word for “peace” is shalom, and it refers to relationships between people, nature and nations.  The true meaning of ‘shalom’ is for people and creation to flourish.  It is the right of every human being, of every living creature and of ‘creation’ to flourish.  That means to be healthy, to thrive and to have vigorous life.

Shalom is much more than peace.

In the Hebrew context, Shalom is thought of in relationship to the land, the soil and Gods creation.  It is the opposite to no conflict.  It is what is happening when there is no conflict.  Shalom is when the eco system, the land and life is the way that it should be.  It is when everything is flourishing, when everything is working the way that it should be. (Ken Wytsma)

In the New Testament, the primary Greek word for “peace” is eirene, and it refers to rest and tranquility. A key focus of peace in the New Testament is the advent of Jesus Christ, as announced by the angels in Luke 2:14 (“Peace on earth . . .”). Isaiah had predicted the Messiah would be the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), and He is called the Lord of peace. (source)

I have added the lyrics to two songs that talk about peace.  I wonder as you meditate on the word peace and as you read the lyrics to these songs.   Consider being one who runs after peace.

As you consider your situation, your relationships, your world; in what areas could you be a ‘peacemaker’.  In what relationships could you be a mediator, a counsellor, or someone who intervenes.  In what areas could you be one who enables others to flourish and to grow and to thrive.

xxx Lisa – Shalom

DSCF0642 (1)

Peace Train 

by Cat Stevens

Now I’ve been happy lately thinking about the things to come

And I believe it could be

Something good has begun

Oh I’ve been smiling lately

Dreaming about the world as one

And I believe it could be

Someday it’s going to come

Cause I’m on the edge of darkness

There ride the peace train

Oh peace train take this country

Come take me home again

Oh peace train sounding louder

Guide on the peace train

Come on now peace train

Yes peace train holy roller,

Everyone jump on the peace train

Come on now Peace Train

Get you bags together

Go bring your good friends too

Cause its getting nearer

It soon will be with you

 

Get Along

by Guy Sebastian

Some only want some shelter

Some want a mansion in the sky

Some want a thousand virgins

Some move better with their minds

And when all the worlds collide

All they know is too divide

And its easy if their faceless

To hate the other side 

And the others caught between

Are the only ones to bleed

And the ones they leave behind

Can only sit and cry

Dear God, Dear Soul

Dear Mary,  Mohammad

Can we all just get along

Can we all just get along

Dear heart, Dear life

Dear soldier, Dear Martyr

Where did we go wrong

Can we all just get along.

Some set fire to crosses

Some fight the right to cross their dream

Some don’t believe at all

But do anything to make the news

And when all the worlds collide

All they know is too divide

And its easy if their faceless

To hate the other side

And the others caught between

Are the only ones to bleed

And the ones they leave behind

Can only sit and cry

 

 

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Thanks for considering.

Love Lisa

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