From the desk of...

Making Peace

When I was a child I loved to play the game of wishes. If you could have anything… be anything… do anything…

For me it was a way to escape – to imagine a world outside of myself. My mother, however, had a memorable wish that I can’t let go of, even all these years later. I remember asking her “what would you wish for?” and her answer: “really… world peace.”

As a child I thought that she just didn’t know how to play the game…(you’re supposed to wish for the power of invisibility, or a billion dollars, or a talking zebra… )

I realize all these years later that not only was she sincere in her wish, she wasn’t wishing for herself. She was wishing for me. She wished for her children – for other children she hadn’t and would never meet, and for the grandchildren she probably hoped for even then. All these years later, I am so glad she did. Her wish for peace taught the child in me that peace was missing in our world, but that it wasn’t lost forever. It was worth wishing for, and working for too.

The news today must be just as terrifying as it was for my parents all those years ago. Planes disappear, buildings collapse, governments rise and fall and all the while… My own children are growing up in a world of fear and uncertainty. I am starting to look at wishes in a whole new way.

Being peaceful people – making and not just keeping peace- can be a struggle for us. Alexander Solzhenitsyn wrote this about his experience of war: “Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes, not through parties, states or between classes, nor between political parties either, but right through all human hearts.” We have the capacity for good and evil inside each of us. We have the responsibility to choose, and to discover the purpose we were created to fulfill…

We are human. We fail over and over again and yet we each have inside of us an infinite capacity for good!

“Be agreeable, be sympathetic, be loving, be compassionate, be humble. That goes for all of you, no exceptions. No retaliation. No sharp-tongued sarcasm. Instead, bless – that’s your job, to bless. You’ll be a blessing and also get a blessing.” (1Peter 3: 8-9).

The world is in a terrible state. There are more conflicts and heartbreaks every day – so many that I can’t bear to listen to the news with my children – so many that I struggle sometimes to find the path of light and hope and faith in the midst of it all and yet… I know without question that good can be hidden under conflict, and that great kindnesses may be just beyond what we can see clearly… We are charged with the responsibility to make peace. To bless, to be kind, too bring love to the world. To bring love.

The challenge of making peace – of finding the joy and potential for life in spite of all the struggle and frustration – was an issue for my mother thirty five years ago, and remains a challenge for us today. Where can we go from here?

As a parent and teacher I am
bound by this covenant of kindness and truth and strive to uphold it in all that I do…

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And I hope that our examples of kindness, of love, of patience and of peace will spread from person to person until the idea of peace becomes the contagious expectation of peace… For my children, for my grandchildren, and for yours…

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3 thoughts on “Making Peace

  1. Pingback: Really….world peace? | Mimi's Blog

  2. Pingback: Advent… (Peace) | martinistyle

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