Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.
What could possibly be more ridiculous than being a person of peace? Could you imagine how chaotic the world would be if more people devoted themselves to reconciliation, forgiveness, mercy, and wholeness? How long do you think it would take for evil to win the day? It’s no wonder that here in America, images of a Colt .45 handgun are conjured at the mention of the word far before examples of kindness come to mind.
Across the Western world, the concept of living life as a peacemaker is similarly lost.
Peace is an especially strange concept today, as we remember the destruction of the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan thirteen years ago. The collective American conscience screamed for justice. Vengeance must be done. I remember vividly my own feelings as a high school senior, swept away somewhere in-between a stunned silence and a growing rage.
Peace seemed, at the time, an absurd and idealistic notion.
It still seems ridiculous.
It seems ridiculous to meet abuse with prayer for the wellbeing of the perpetrator of evil. It seems ridiculous to endure injustice. It seems ridiculous to weep for the victims as well as the doers of violence.
It is only natural to demand an eye for an eye. It is only natural to meet violence with all the firepower at our disposal. It is only natural to fight when we are confronted with evil. It is only natural to engage in the war that the enemy demands.
But our natural way of life only leads to death.
Will you follow Jesus into the wild and ridiculous ways of making peace?
What would that look like in your daily interactions?
What life is there, waiting for you?