As we approach the second week of Advent, we prepare to light the candle of peace. With that in mind, I have been dwelling on peace. I will admit to having my car radio tuned to an ‘All Christmas’ music station. As I listen, I am amazed at how many songs talk about peace: Let There be Peace on Earth; Handel’s Messiah; I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing. My heart swells in anticipation.
Until…I hear the news.
It seems a little strange to be singing and hoping for peace, with everything that is going on in the world today. Today’s headline from Google read: Hamas calls for new uprising after Trump’s Jerusalem decision; Trump’s ‘ill-considered’ Jerusalem decision will have wide-reaching repercussions; High winds in forecast complicate California wildfire-fighting efforts; China says India invaded airspace with drown that crash-landed; Al Franken, facing new allegations of sexual misconduct, set to make announcement today; Judge begins final charge to Laura Babcock jury; and the list continues.
What disconnect between the headlines and my ‘All Christmas’ music station. I wonder, is peace possible?
As Christians, we know that the true shalom of God will not come until Jesus has returned and brought with him his kingdom. Shalom is more than an absence of conflict, it is the gift of God’s active presence and caring. It is a perfect peace that surpasses all understanding.
But what about today? What about in that place in between?
Do we secure our doors and build fences? Close our boarders and ignore those ‘outside’? Do we continue to passively wait in anticipation? No…it is up to us to be instruments of justice today, a justice that leads to peace.
Take a moment to name one thing you could do to be a peacemaker—peace in a relationship, peace with our earth, peace with a community, peace with our laws, peace with our relationship to other countries, peace in equality, PEACE…
I pray this week that I will be open to ways I can find peace with God, open to ways I can find peace in my heart when I’m troubled, and open to the Holy Spirit to move me to establishing peace on earth.