Thursday, June 03, 2010

Fruits of the Spirit - Peace

Peace. There are so many people that don't have the faintest idea what real peace is. Real peace is the confidence in Jesus Christ that with Him, nothing can overpower you.

Romans 8:31- “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?”

True peace comes from confidence in God – not friends, not spouces, not family, not money, not anything that this world can offer. But having peace and showing peace are two different matters; so, I propose a challenge – become a “peacemaker” not a “peacekeeper”. There is a huge difference between peacekeepers and peacemakers. A peacekeeper will do anything it takes to not “stir up waves.” Peacekeepers are willing to succumb to any demands to “keep the peace.” (Think of Europe during the Second World War when Poland was given to Hitler.) Caving into someone's demands to avoid conflict resolves nothing! It only postpones the fight or worse, compounds the problem. Imagine someone having a cold. By refusing to treat the sickness the cold could turn into pneumonia and continue, getting worse until the person dies. Ignoring the problem does not solve it. Keeping the peace does far more harm than good. However, a peacemaker does whatever is in her power to see that God's peace is fulfilled.

A Peacemaker stands up for what is right, no matter the cost. Jesus himself said, "If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you” (John 15:18). So we need not be discouraged when we find that our “abnormal” beliefs stir up trouble. By standing up for what we believe in we make peace by doing what's right.

Matthew 5:9- "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons [or daughters] of God.”

What Christian would not want to be blessed? And what Christian would not want to be called a daughter of God? Standing up when everyone else would sit back is radical! Unbelievers cannot understand why a Christian will continue to defend the faith when there is no earthly gain, but that's the point. As Christians we do not store up our treasures here on earth, but in heaven. A Peacemaker will run into the fray and do what God has declared as right.

Matthew 21:12- “And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves.”

Jesus refused to pass by those who were doing evil in the temple. And neither should we watch our fellow humans pass us by on their way to hell. Be a peacemaker by being bold enough to show your faith. Be a peacemaker by helping our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. So often I see good Christian families segregated because of a simple misunderstanding. Be peacemakers by not allowing the world to bully you into its ways.

One more word of encouragement: have confidence in the Jesus Christ that saved you. Remember that you are precious and beautiful in His eyes, and only Jesus can give you the “peace that paseth all understanding.”

(This is from the Magazine I write for called Passion.)


D.B. said...

Thanks for writing this series, Christine. It is nice to be reminded of some of the basics of Christian living. I look forward to the rest.

Plus, I like your description of the difference between a peacekeeper and peacemaker.

Christine Ericson said...

Thanks, Derrick. I wanted to do this series for the magazine I write for, and I thought it'd be good for your blog too. I'm so glad it's been enjoyed!