Hearts for Peace
Thursday, October 22, 2009

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Isaiah 49:6 – “It is too small a thing for you to be My servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept.  I will also make you a light to the Gentiles.”

 

                We live in a world at war.  We have war in Afghanistan, war in Jerusalem, war in the Sudan, war in our cities, war in our churches, war in our families, and war in our souls.    The enemy of God is warring in the souls of men.  Bodies are strewn across the city streets of Baghdad; bombs go off destroying the little children and women that have them strapped to their hate filled backs; gangs rip the peace from the city dwellers; churches leave lives and faith shattered; and children are rejected by parents whose eyes are only self focused.  This morning the grim news of a little 7 year old girl’s body was found in a garbage dump a state away from where she was abducted on her way home from school just two days ago.  What is happening in our world torn by hatred, jealously, self-centeredness, and dissension at every turn?

 

                The answer to this question is not a new one, but the only answer that can bring peace to our world and to our very souls.  The answer is not mighty armies.  The most sophisticated army the world has ever known is powerless to thwart the damages of hatred and fire of zealotry.  Radio guided planes, armored clothes, and bunker buster bombs are powerless against an enemy who hates.  The answer does not lie in political systems.  Politics is far more divisive that it is unifying.  Politics is all about power, and those in power wanting to stay there, and those who are not in power, wanting in.  And to accomplish our goals we demonize our opponents and stir hatred in the hearts of people who will listen so that our point of view will prevail.  Education is not the answer, for while education may provide tools for survival, it cannot define good or evil; it cannot distinguish value systems that are meaningful  with value systems that are destructive; and it is powerless over politics to teach real truth (that is why our children learn evolution in school).

 

                All we have to do to understand that the answer to the world dilemma does not rest in armies, politics or education is to look at history.  Remember WATTS in California.  In the 60’s it burned to the ground because of race riots.  Then our government stepped forward with enforcement, political solutions, and education.  And this worked for a while, but 20 years latter a spark ignited a smoldering fire which had not been extinguished by power, politics, and education.  And once again that portion of Los Angeles was in flames.  And it happened because we did not deal with the right problem.

 

                Jesus stood over Jerusalem with tears in His eyes and He cried out, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, if you only knew this day what it is that would bring you peace.”  And He still looks down upon our world today with the same cry.  For you see, the only thing that will bring us peace is a relationship with the God of Peace.  When we take seriously the teachings of Christ instead of the rants of religion (Christian or otherwise), we will be taking the first steps of empowering the world for peace.  When turning the other cheek, not letting anger well up inside of us, when we forgive as Jesus forgave, when we harvest the forest in our own eyes  before gathering sawdust in our brothers’ eyes, when we seek first the Kingdom of God where loving Him and loving one another is our constitution, when our lives become focused on Christ and what He wants instead of the selfish desires of our own hearts, then we can expect a better world to emerge.  If dead beat dads (and moms) would let go of selfish interests, if warring churches would return to their first love, if cities would pour love into their inner core, and if we would deal in the world with grace before politics, love before power, and peace before victory – then things will begin to happen.  As a historical footnote, a revolution of love which began with 12 “unschooled and ordinary men” ended three hundred years later with a radical and peaceful overthrowing of a persecuting government.  I will close with a comment from Dallas Willard – “If you are going to give peace a chance, you must first radically change the human heart.”  And the human heart cannot be changed outside of the grace and person of Jesus Christ.


Kingdom Road Ministries
PO Box 503
10 South Main, Suite 201
Victor, ID 83455
903-262-5088
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