Read His Words Before Ours!
Have you noticed an entrustment from the Lord typically comes with a weight, making it a gift challenging us to grow and change? Almost like the process through which a diamond is made, through heat and pressure.
Diamonds sparkle with a beauty captivating to the eye and paint rainbows on walls when captured by the light. The outcome of intense heat and pressure is admired and valued, but rarely is the formation process considered. Rather, our attention focuses on the finished product before us.
So what weighty entrustment am I referring to with such a comparison?
Yup, peace. And before we get too far away from the diamond analogy, think back to the last time you were in the midst of a chaotic scenario and a peaceful person was present. Did she “sparkle”? Could you sense her peace and see its effect on those around her?
I’ve watched a person of peace step into a room and bring harmony into discord.
The peace came with an authority,
a confidence in Christ Who is our Peace,
and an ultimately effective perseverance.
In Matthew 5, we are challenged to be peacemakers. The Greek word used is Eirēnopoiós, which carries the idea of “one who restores peace, favors good understanding, settles quarrels and stops conflicts.” Have you ever found yourself being a peacemaker?
At times, I’ve prayed for the Lord to exude His peace through me. I can guarantee those prayers and heart posture are the exact reason peace rolled off me onto the surrounding situations. I recall a time when a woman thanked me for being in a scenario, because I brought calm with me. To God be the glory!
God alone is the source of our peace. Though I became a Christian when I was a young child, I was already aware of my sin, standing insurmountable, between me and my Heavenly Father. When I entered into a relationship with Him, I also experienced my first encounter with His peace.
In my moment of humble belief, Christ removed my sin and brought peace to our friendship. His profound sacrifice in taking on my sin at the cross met my deep repentance and humility, and He became my peacemaker.
Since then, our walk together has been much like that diamond forming, a repetition of the above process so many times I have gratefully lost count and He has graciously not kept one. As I have grown in my journey with the Lord, He has grown my ability to be a peacemaker to better reflect His other-worldly peace.
A peace that restores what once was lost.
So how can each one of us become peacemakers in a world crying out for true peace? I believe we must look to the Holy Spirit for direction and as our sole source of ever greater peace.
In fact, in Galatians, we learn peace is a fruit of the Spirit; peace is not a quality we naturally find within ourselves. It is, however, a foundational characteristic of our God, one He shares with us through an outpouring of His Spirit.
Remember the second half of this Beatitude?
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.”
(Matthew 5:9, emphasis mine)
When we radiate and restore peace,
when we seek good and deep understanding of those who are different from us,
when we stop conflicts and settle quarrels,
we are Christ’s peacemakers.
And when we are peacemakers in a time and space when politics have deteriorated to a bitter, blame-shifting disaster, when the economy is in shattered fragments, when people are suffering and dying by the hundreds of thousands, and when fierce battles of social injustice continue to rage in our communities and MURDER HORNETS ARE A THING . . .
. . . then we will be called the daughters of God, for who but God could bring peace in such pain-filled, dark chaos? The Holy Spirit working peacemaking through us becomes a testimony of our Father’s heart and a beacon of hope to the lost and hurting.
In order to have peace to pour out, we must be cultivating our relationships with the Triune Lord. We must also surrender our understanding of life to Him and seek His face. Philippians 4:6-7 explains how:
“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.”
Yes, this is much easier said than done! But be assured, the Lord is faithful to answer our prayers, and our worship, with His all-surpassing peace!
Sometimes, His peace points us towards engaging in tough conversations to bring resolution to a conflict.
Sometimes, His peace cautions us to quietly wait for the Lord to work behind the scenes.
Always, we need the discernment of the Spirit to guide us.
Always, the Lord and His peace are at the center of our peacemaking efforts.
And as we grow in our walks with Him and peace increases within us (praise God for the fruit He bears), we may just begin to sparkle in new ways.
Shine on, sister, shine on.
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!