Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
If there’s anything in true shortage in our world today, it’s peace. Check your current news source. Google current wars or visit warsintheworld.com and you’ll see that we’re in the “wars and rumors of wars” stage of time. In addition to these big real-life wars with guns and bombs, there are the smaller wars we all face every day. The war between what is right and what is wrong. The wars of words and deeds that rage between couples in the throes of divorce, among families wrought with discord. In the business world, companies overtaking other companies and the threatened unemployment fallout leaves anything but peace in its wake. So many more examples could be listed here. People need peace.
Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers. . .” The very word gives us an insight into one of our key roles as Christians in the world today. It is possible to make peace. . . and we are called to discover how to do that, and to give ourselves to doing it. James 3:18 tells us, “And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.” If we are peacemakers, we are able to sow the fruit of righteousness in the world in which we live.
In our lives we must make peace with a lot of different things, and a lot of different people. We must make peace with our pasts. Regardless of what has been, take it to Jesus – let Him wash it in His blood and be done with it. Your past does not determine your future, unless you refuse to make peace with it and move past it. Jesus died on the cross to redeem us from sin. Make peace with your past by allowing Him to redeem it.
We must make peace with ourselves. I know that sounds a little strange, but the fact of the matter is, sometimes the most difficult person to forgive is ourself. We can forgive others. We can forgive family members and strangers. But we have looming memories of past mistakes and past situations, words we can’t take back, actions we wish we had not taken – and we somehow cannot figure out a way to forgive ourselves. That’s again, where the blood of Jesus comes in. Don’t go fishing under the blood, for things that have been washed away. He has forgiven you; forgive yourself. And with that forgiveness, comes peace.
We must make peace with others. Sometimes the difference between war and peace can be determined by a word spoken – or a word unspoken. Given the opportunity to “have your say” and start a war – or escalate an existing one – the peacemaker learns the value of “holding your peace.” I had a friend who raised three daughters. As you can imagine, there were many little skirmishes throughout the years – over everything from Barbie dolls to the TV’s remote control. His words to them apply here: “It takes two to argue. Just don’t.” “Blessed are the peacemakers…”
“For they shall be called the children of God. . .” Children are like their parents. One will have the mother’s eyes and the father’s nose. One will have hair the exact color of one parent or another. And even in temperaments, we often see – and say, “You’re just like your mother!” The highest compliment of all, though, is when someone says, “I see Jesus in you . . .” Upon His arrival in Bethlehem, angels proclaimed, “Peace on earth . . .” He was the ultimate peacemaker, coming into this world reconciling sinful man to sinless God. He made peace between the Creator and creation.
So, it is ours to choose. We can make war or peace. We can love or hate. We can choose to be like Him and to be called “the children of God.”