An old rancher, knowing the end was near, summoned the family to his bedside: “Do you all want to keep fighting or shall we try to get along?” The words the family later inscribed on his headstone reminded them of his wish for them: “Rest in peace.”
Peace is God’s deepest desire for us, and the Creator wove it into the fabric of creation. Throughout Scripture there are hints of the fullness of God’s intended shalom, a vivid peace that is not just a lack of war, but a deep participation in God’s justice. Shalom is peace that makes for justice, peace that reaches toward the right relationships God intended in creation.
Gracious God, you know our troubled hearts and warlike souls, yet you call us your own dear children and you embrace us in love. As we receive your embrace, let us receive a peace that empowers us to work for justice in your world. Amen.
This message was adapted from the “Making Peace and Being Peace” Bible study written by Martha E. Stortz that first appeared in the April 2008 issue of Lutheran Woman Today (now Gather) magazine.
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