OK, so by now you know that I write a lot about conflict and war and peace and all that, right? Fairly clear assessment that it is, I just have to dig into this more. I am not convinced by my own writings at this point, only that something isn’t right, something is not quite fitting into this puzzle I call enlightenment. You can call it anything you like but at some point we all make realizations about one thing or another and this is one thing that I am constantly at battle with…no pun intended.
Conflict has been discussed, so has war. Peace has been hashed over and over so much I might need to come up with a new word. There are so many buzzwords these days that peace is almost passé. We can talk about greed versus human desire and then discuss semantics; wouldn’t that be fun!? There has to be a great way to make this point, some words that just sum it all up, if only there was a book I could refer to…
I know, let’s look at the Bible. Maybe if we are lucky we can discover some hidden nugget of understanding amongst all those pages… (I think my sarcasm is making a play for my diplomacy).
Dear brother James has this to say in chapter one (The Message), versus 19-27:
19-21Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. God's righteousness doesn't grow from human anger. So throw all spoiled virtue and cancerous evil in the garbage. In simple humility, let our gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation-garden of your life.
22-24Don't fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don't act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.
25But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action.
26-27Anyone who sets himself up as "religious" by talking a good game is self-deceived. This kind of religion is hot air and only hot air. Real religion, the kind that passes muster before God the Father, is this: Reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight, and guard against corruption from the godless world.
Normally I would dive in with my own thoughts but let’s examine this set of verses together. 19 says listen first, speak second. 20 says that no good thing that is meant for God’s kingdom comes from our being pissed off. 21 says to be humble and let God do the work in us. Let’s break it down again.
19-21 says listen first, speak second, don’t get angry, remain humble and let God take control. That my friends, is diplomacy 101.
22 says to listen to the word and not let the word leave you. 23 says to act on what you hear. 24 is a warning of what happens when we listen but do not act. Recap!!
22-24 says listen, act and repeat. Listen, act and repeat. Say it with me.
25 is all about hope. For some the time has come when you catch sight of how amazing God truly is and want nothing more than what He has to offer. 25 is all about affirmation in living for Christ and knowing that there is great joy in serving God. Review…
25 is faith in action.
26 is another warning, especially for those who talk the talk but fail to walk the walk. 27 is a reminder of what the word religious means. When we have faith, we become religious in our actions. The word religious simply means faithful repetition of action. When we have faith in something, we should be religious about our actions as a result of that faith. Your religion is what you are faithful about repeating, over and over and over. 27 gives us all a clear directive on what our repetitive actions should look like. Take care of the homeless AND the loveless and guard against corruption from the godless world.
For the last several years I have been trying to share my views with many people. I have grown discontented with the minimal feedback I have received, although what has come has been extremely beneficial, so thank you to all who have shared your thoughts with me. Conflict is my big thing right now and I need to come to terms with it by asking God to sum it all up one day, I know He’s big enough.
My rants and ramblings are derived from a soul that has been searching for specific truths for a very long time. My run in with Jesus has brought me most of the answers but there are still a few truths that need to be flushed out. Namely is the understanding of why so many Christians hold on so dearly to the idea of peace as Jesus prescribed while also making excuses for going to war. Honestly, I may never resolve that one until I come face to face with my creator and we get a chance to chat.
As far as I can tell, we are called to be peacemakers in a rough situation. We are called to resolve conflict and shelve our anger. We are called to love one another and not hate, let alone murder. We are called to be like Him who came before us and showed us the way. In fact He showed us the only way.
It seems there are a lot of people listening. How many of us are acting?
My life is not mine, and yet it is mine to live for Him. Peace to you all.