Happy Veterans Day. American flags veterans against a blackboard background.
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. John 14:27
Peace… Peace is a state of existence in which one is at ease – safe, calm, and content. Peace is not only the absence of war, but also the presence of harmony, repose, and serenity. We strive for personal peace all the time – the people with whom we associate, the locations in which we choose to live, and the safeguards we take against harmful outside influences. Yet, nothing we do can produce lasting peace in our lives, much less in our world.
War is a fact of human existence. At no time has our world existed in peace. There are always lands to conquer, wealth to take, and threats to defeat. In the absence of a peaceful world, rulers, nations, and peoples pursue power and gain without regard for damage done or lives destroyed. As tragic as they are, such aspirations fill the pages of history.
When Jesus was giving His disciples His final instructions and directions, He promised them the Holy Spirit, and He promised them peace. What is telling is His comparison of peace to what the world gives. The belief that we can all just get along if we talk to one another and accept one another has been fashionable for most of my life. In 1990, Bette Midler recorded the internationally acclaimed song, “From a Distance” – harmony in every land, food for all, songs of peace and hope in every man. The sentiments expressed are beautiful, but they are also dangerously false. To believe we can all just “get along” is to accept that no principle, no cause, no commitment, nothing is worth dying for.
Thank God that He did not accept the idea that human beings should all just get along. He believes we are worth dying for. Certainly, Jesus commanded us to pray for our enemies, but He never pretended we do not have any enemies. We follow a Lord Who was crucified by the world. If this world can crucify the Son of God, it’s not going to have much concern for us. Around the world, every year, an estimated 100,000 Christians are martyred by those who would destroy our faith. That number does not include those mutilated, raped, and enslaved. Until Christ returns, we are subject to the whims of the powers that be, and there will be wars, injustice, and death. The only real peace to be found is the peace Christ Jesus gives, a peace that is not of this world.
So, for every member of the military who has stood or currently stands between us and those who would destroy us, I am truly grateful. For the evil that has not reached my life because others chose to serve and sacrifice, no simple “Thank You” is enough.
I pray you abide in the peace that passes all understanding.
In Christ –
Elizabeth Moreau © 2019