Making Peace

Taming our tongue and not returning insult for insult deprives quarrels of oxygen.

    “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Romans 12:18

Peace is an elusive commodity in our world.

Turn on the news and you’ll be bombarded with stories of strife and discord: wars, protests, political clashes, interpersonal conflicts.

Maintaining peace with others can seem like an impossible aspiration when there are so many forces working against it.

Yet as followers of Christ, we are called to “make every effort” to live at peace (Hebrews 12:14). This directive in Romans 12 makes clear our responsibility.

Peacemaking must begin with us, regardless of others’ attitudes and actions. We are to do all we can to promote peace.

Removing Barriers

Making peace requires examining our own hearts.

Do we harbor bitterness, nurse grudges, gossip, or cast judgment on others?

These destroy relationships and grieve the Holy Spirit. God wants us to take responsibility for removing inner barriers that hinder peace.

As we surrender past hurts to the Lord and walk in forgiveness, it clears away debris that chokes relationships.

Praying blessings over those who have wronged us cultivates empathy and softens hardened hearts.

And asking God to refine our speech and filter our words prevents many conflicts from igniting in the first place.

Depositing Seeds of Peace

Once inner walls come down through dealing with our own hearts, we can turn outward and actively deposit seeds of peace.

This starts with modeling qualities that defuse tension like patience, kindness, and self-control.

Taming our tongue and not returning insult for insult deprives quarrels of oxygen.

Lovingly confronting issues in their early stages, before they intensify, can prevent ruptured relationships.

Seeking to truly understand others’ perspectives rather than forcing our opinions fosters mutual edification.

God’s Peace in Us

Of course, living at peace is not fully up to us. We will encounter people who are difficult, divisive or downright antagonistic.

As much as it depends on us, we should pursue peace while trusting God with results that are out of our control.

And we can take comfort that God’s peace in our hearts is not contingent on perfect relationships.

By drawing near to Jesus, the Prince of Peace, we tap into a wellspring of serenity that transcends circumstances.

His Spirit calms anxious thoughts, soothing relational tensions. Even when surrounded by hostility and chaos, we can know God’s peace guarding our hearts and minds (Philippians 4:7).

Agents of Reconciliation

God calls peacemakers His children and tasks us with spreading peace in our spheres of influence (Matthew 5:9).

As ambassadors of reconciliation, we bring the ministry entrusted to us – one conversation, act of forgiveness, gesture of goodwill at a time (2 Corinthians 5:18-19).

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