Monday, December 21, 2015

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

The Coming: Hope of Peace
Isaiah 11:1-10

  
John Abraham
 Carmel MTC, Boston, MA
6. The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them.

The world we are living in today needs peace, probably more than at any other time in history. We hear the news of peoples and communities trying to kill each other in the attempt to establish themselves. In this scenario the vision of Isaiah is powerful and relevant. Under the leadership of a child, the wolf and lamb, the leopard and young goat, calf and lion, animals of seemingly opposite pole, dwell together. This is peace offered by the coming of our Saviour. Peace is not the absence of diversity, differences or trouble  but the presence of Christ enabling our hearts to be calm, just like the center of a wheel which is still, even when it is rotating at a fast speed and relate to the other .
Jesus is calling us, his followers, to be peacemakers. In order to bring about peace we have to have peace within ourselves. Jesus offers us, “My peace I give to you…Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14:27)  
“There is no other way to life and true inner peace, than the way of the Cross, and of daily self-denial.’- Imitation of Christ. The Holy Spirit living in us equip us to bear our trials and sufferings. When we face unexpected stress and sorrows, the Gethsemane prayer of Jesus, “Abba Father, if it be your will may this cup be removed from me, yet not my will but thine be done.” will bring the peace of Christ into our hearts.
On the surface the peace that Jesus offers to his followers may seem to be passive. In fact it is active and needs our willful participation. “Seek peace and pursue it.” (Psalm 34:14). We should work hard to make peace. This may mean loving, and forgiving those who hate or harm us and doing good to them.
‘Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me’ is a simple song that has helped to create a climate for world peace and understanding. Jill Jackson, the writer of this song, had attempted to commit suicide after a failed marriage. She wrote this song after experiencing the "life-saving joy of God's peace and unconditional love."

PRAYER

“Lord, make me an instrument of your peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love.” - St. Francis of Assisi

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
  
“Peace hath its victories no less renowned than war.” John Milton