Peace is a Gift

John 14:27  Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.

Revelation 6:4 And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men would slay one another; and a great sword was given to him.

For months, the fear in the air has thickened. We’ve been snappish and quarrelsome, looking for anyone who doesn’t think the way we do, act the way we do, have the priorities that we do. Even more than the fear of ill health or lost revenue, the humans with whom we live and interact have been brought to their knees by enforced solitude, ever-changing rules, and the mystery of broken friendships.

2020 has been “interesting”, as used in the classic curse, “May you live in interesting times” . Why has it been this way? Why are we seeing man’s hand turn against man everywhere we turn? Why? Wildfires, dead koala bears, a worldwide pandemic, radioactive fires, riots… what’s going on here?

This world is fallen. Without the grace of God, we see the ugly truth that surrounds us, the true nature of mankind.

Peace is a gift. And that gift has been withdrawn.

Have you ever been given that gift, the hour or the week of the peace that passes all understanding? I have. It is a precious, uncomfortable gift. It is respite. Respite from your swirling emotions, respite sometimes so thorough that you lose your footing, uncomfortable in your sudden lack of discomfort. You’ve lost your way, without your old struggles… and so you return to normalcy, and regret that you gave the gift back far too soon.

But all peace is a gift. Man’s nature is savage and cruel. Even cats haven’t invented the torturer’s rack – but we have. Bestial would be a compliment for what I see in the mirror. My cat might keep a lizard alive for a few hours, but humans? Humans can convince their enemies to kill themselves with mere words – for no more reason than that they can. We are fallen. We are evil.

Peace is a gift. We had that gift. We squandered that gift, with a thousand thousand cruelties hidden, with a thousand thousand twists of the knife on the public square. And now, we have not peace.

No peace in our hearts, no peace in our streets, no peace in our networks, no peace on our computer screens.

We could fall on our knees and humble ourselves, we could beg for that which we do not deserve, we could ask the One who gives graciously and generously.

We could do that. Some have.

We could, further, turn to that One and align with Him. We could ask to be held in His peace, even as we struggle. We could choose not to offend His rules, we could accept our place as children in need of a wise Father to guide us. We could walk in His peace, forever.

Fewer will do this.

But this is the decision that only you can make. Will you put down your self-sufficiency and ask for a gift?

Will you ask for peace?

Now is the time for repentance. Now is the time for renewal. Now is the time to change your course. This is your warning. This is your dress rehearsal.

Revelation 3:19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.

Now’s a very good time to get busy.

6 comments

    • Not sure why you’re thanking me, but you’re welcome!

      We have a choice. Follow Jesus – very seriously – or not. What we sow individually will be reaped in a short while. What we have sown corporately? Unless we get revival, I don’t think there’s going to be more than momentary respite between our harvests of pain.

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  1. I am stranded in the thick of left-wing social justice madness where I’m repeatedly told how evil is the color of my skin and so therefore, every single thing about me. This is harder for me than it might be because of long past personal history and clinging to my Lord is getting quite difficult. I hear you and I thank you and I ask for your prayers.

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    • Prayers of course.

      Privilege (and it’s real) isn’t the fault of the one GIVEN the privilege. Any advantage given is to be used for good.

      For instance, if Els and I both sat down to cafeteria lunches and I had bigger portions and an apple, is that my *fault*? No. It would be my fault if I took her apple.

      Sometimes we don’t notice, because we’re so concentrated on our own things that we don’t see what others don’t have that we do. That’s a little our fault but not huge.

      My responsibility starts when I see that I have an apple that my friend doesn’t. What do I do?
      – I could say, “down with apples!” and toss it on the floor.
      – I could apologize to her for having an apple.
      – Or I could cut my apple in half, and share it. I could also go ask why my friend doesn’t have an apple and try to get one for her.

      We’re so busy self-flagellating right now it’s preposterous. And unhelpful.

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      • I’m not even talking about the old privilege argument, although there really is a special something about being lectured about privilege by your boss who makes more than double what you do, so ….. oh the world of the left-wing charitable foundation! No, I’m talking about “white people are evil” radical chic emails that I have to sort through and evaluate and forward and process. We used to call privilege “remembering that the other guy’s burdens are greater than your own,” and I miss those days tremendously. I’m turning into my favorite aunt, who also turned into an awful reactionary in her old age. I’m feeling much better tonight, probably thanks to the prayers of my friends. God bless, Hearthie!

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      • ((hugs)) I hope you find a new job soon. :/ Love, your friend with a women’s studies degree from UC Santa Cruz. (so I know EXACTLY what you’re talking about)

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