Reflections of God's Goodness
Let there be peace on earth—the peace that was meant to be…
For many of us, these are familiar words to a favorite song. Right now, they seem more important than ever.
The post-Resurrection Jesus greeted His followers with the words,
Peace be with you.
What did those words sound like to the disciples who were hiding in the upper room behind locked doors out of fear? Were they comforted? Most likely, Jesus’ presence brought peace even without the words or at least they hoped that truly Jesus would give them peace and take away their fear…that He would bring with Him ‘everything’ they needed!
What do those words sound like to us today? We hear them each Sunday at Mass, “My peace I leave you…” Yet, peace seems elusive as day after day, violence erupts somewhere in our country. Do we know what peace is, looks like, feels like?
“Shalom” is the Hebrew word used in Scripture for peace. Its meaning goes way beyond our understanding of peace as the absence of conflict or discord. Jesus was in essence saying, “My completeness, my perfection and my fullness be with you!”
If we dig deep into the meaning of the word “Shalom”, we find it means completeness, wholeness, health, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony. All of these words could well be considered attributes of Jesus. Jesus is wholeness and health; safety and soundness. In Him is tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest and harmony. He wants to give us Himself and transform our fear and unrest to “Shalom”.
Have you ever met a person who is so peaceful and loving that just being in their presence increases your own peace and love? That is what Jesus has to offer. He wants us to be transformed in Him, so that our presence in the world will bring His peace.
Let peace begin with me, let this be my solemn vow,
to take each moment and live each moment
in peace eternally…let there be peace on earth
and let it begin with me….
God has always wanted to make us whole and holy. Whole in the sense of knowing we are loved, forgiven and precious in His sight. We are His ‘beloved!’ As such, when we take time to be in His presence, His wholeness will begin to heal every broken part of us. Yes, we are a work in progress, but if we are willing and able to seek Him, Jesus can begin to transform the world, one person at a time, beginning with you and me.
May the coming days find you in His presence and His peace. Let there be peace on earth!
Sister Mary Ann Barnhorn