But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
Amos 5:24 (CEB)
I made the mistake yesterday asking God for a “peace bomb.” That’s a juxtapostion of two words if I ever saw one. What I was asking for was an “invasion of love” — there I go again.
Not the right descriptive language to use when talking about peace, but I really needed an aggressive invasion of peace in my life. One that took me by surprise and threw me off my normal rhythms of worry and anxiety. I wanted to be knocked right into a state of Zen and feel peace at my core. I wanted to be held so tightly by the peace that there was no way to escape its unrelenting grip on my life.
We associate nonviolence with passivity, but this doesn’t affect its potency. Those who “fight for justice” fight with the same fervor and fire but use different means to obtain the desired result. Often these ways shock the opponent — expecting elevated violence and aggression to be reciprocated. The approach of nonviolence gives the peacemaker the chance to utilize creative tactics to meet the intended goal.
Nonviolence is not non-action. We must actively respond to chaos that surrounds.
Action: The next time you feel the need to light a candle to claim a moment of peace, write an email to a government official first. When you are done meditating, make a donation of time or money to a peacemaking organization.
Prayer: Dear God, when we feel those impulses to act out give us the courage to turn them into a call to action. Instead of lashing out transform that energy into a desire to serve. Amen.
Kelly Fitzgerald is a PC(USA) pastor who lives on Florida’s coast reveling in God’s creation with every glorious sunset.
This year’s Path of Peace reflections are designed to help participants explore peacemaking efforts addressing some of the major issues of our time. The theme for the 29 days of the 2022 A Season of Peace is Led Forth in Peace: Critical Areas of Engagement for Peacemakers. With these daily reflections, we are invited to reflect upon ways to practice peace by engaging the following critical areas:
- Climate change
- The intersection of poverty and racism