Tag Archives: peace

We Strive to Divide

With a meeting out of the area this morning, Father, I am just now sitting down to write. I am being distracted by many things. Help me to place my attention on You. Amen.

Revelation 5:6-10 (<<click the green)

Lord, You continue to show the Apostle John the sights of the throne room of heaven. There are many in attendance here and they are giving You the honor You rightly deserve. Verse 9 speaks to me.It speaks of Your worthiness to open the scroll, to break its seals. Yes, You are the Lion of Judah but You are also the Lamb of God. You willingly gave yourself to be slaughtered and “your blood has ransomed people for God” and here is what speaks volumes to me. “…your blood has ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.”

Um…anyone left out there? …Nope! The word used there is “every”. Not one person is excluded! Because of what You have done, Lord, we have “become a Kingdom of priests for our God. And [we] (every single one of us who follow You) will reign on the earth.”

At this point in time (as well as many others I am sure) we are an absolute mess! We look for ways to segregate ourselves. We strive to divide ourselves. Much of humanity’s sole endeavor is to make sure we are broken down into camps of every imaginable disunion.

And even that is not enough! If we each crawled into our own holes that would be bad enough but, no, we must make sure that we express our hatred for whatever other unit that is not like ours or at the very least hatred for those who don’t agree with our viewpoint! It…is…insanity!

We scream for tolerance! …but there is no tolerance… We scream for acceptance and love! …but there is no acceptance or love… We clamor for peace! …but there will be no peace…

We will only find love and peace when we give ourselves over to You, Lord. Then, and only then, will that be the fruit of our labors. Oh, Lord, help us! May Your followers do everything we can to be like…You. I may cost us everything…but it is the only answer. Oh, Lord, help us….

Aug 17th, Thurs, 5:26 pm

“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us…”

This is a Throwback Thursday post from June 17, 2015. It is my very first blog post. Two people viewed it. Hey, you have to start somewhere! 

Father, thank You for Your concern in regards to my spiritual well being and development. Increase my eagerness to join with You each day.

Ephesians 1:1-14

“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us…”

It’s wonderful to see this amazing statement, which I have often proclaimed, firmly set in Your Word. To know that You loved us from eternity past should fill us with great peace and eradicate any doubt as to whose we are.

Help this to be foundational in how I think of myself and how I think of all others, even those that “Christians”* tend to reject. Father, help me to see people through the lens of Your perspective.

April 19th, Sun, 6:45 am

*A little expounding on my use of this term in this way might be helpful. So called “followers of Christ” have gotten a nasty reputation in latter years. Far too often we are haters and that’s not just a label others have put on us – many who bear the name of Christ are haters. If “sinners” don’t agree with us and they take a stand for what they believe, we don’t love them, pray for them or try to live lives before them that draw them to Christ. Instead, we blast them, berate them and out-and-out condemn them! In the Old Testament and the New, we are told over and over again, “Love your neighbor as yourself…” Read the Gospels and you will not find one example of Christ condemning a “sinner”, he loves them, forgives them and commands them to “go and sin no more” but, in no way, shape or form, does he hate them. On the other hand, He does condemn the spiritual leaders of His day. They were two-faced (hypocrites) and self-serving. They had the Law and they knew the Law but chose not to obey. I for one am grateful that he does not condemn sinners  for I wholeheartedly agree with Paul when he wrote in 1 Timothy 1:15, “This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”—and I am the worst of them all.” Father, help us all to see people through the lens of Your perspective.

Love in the Center of It All

Father, the day is ahead and there is much to be done. I would pray that You would guide my thoughts and my actions. May I squeeze as much from it as I possibly can. May I bring glory to You through it all. Amen.

Revelation 1:4-6 (<<click green)

Here I am, Lord, at the beginning of the book that speaks of the end. For those who have had any exposure to teachings from this book we think of many horrific and terrifying things – and those will come as we move forward. Even our own culture paints the apocalypse as being that way, full of evil, death, and destruction.

Lord, You will be our judge, there is no doubt about it. But first and foremost we have to get it in our heads that we were not created to be judged – we brought that upon ourselves – it was our choice, it has been our actions that have made judgement a necessity. In all of our existence from the beginning of time until the end of time, we have been created to be loved. Love is at the center of it all!

As we begin reading these verses we don’t see anger or judgment or condemnation. In the first words of John’s letter to the seven churches we see, “peace”, “grace”, and “love”. John 3:17 tells us,

“God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.”

God, You love us…period. The hymn “To God Be the Glory” has a line that clearly states Your intentions towards us,

“The vilest offender who truly believes,
That moment from Jesus a pardon receives.”

Peter in his second epistle addresses the question of scoffers who say, “What has happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again?” v4 and he answers the question in verse 9,

“The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”

Lord, as I begin my journey into this book, help me to look at all that will transpire through Your eyes and with Your heart. May I be a man after your own heart as I interact with people of all races and creeds, for You love them all. Amen.

June 7th, Wed, 8:23 am

Peace on Earth

Good morning, Father! Thank You so much for the wake-up call! Your love never ceases to amaze me!

Such love, such wondrous love!
Such love, such wondrous love!
That God should love a sinner such as I,
How wonderful is love like this!                      ~ C. Bishop

Lord, as Karen and I sat down last night after a full day I introduced her to an a cappella ensemble of singers whom I have come to love. Their name is Voctave. We enjoyed listening/watching several of their songs on YouTube. One, in particular, touched me. Technically it is a Christmas song but its message rings true throughout the year. “This Is My Wish / Let There Be Peace on Earth” is its title (click on it to listen).

I know Your heart breaks, too, Lord, as You look across the world You so lovingly created and You see what we do to each other – the anger, the hatred, the violence, the back biting, the discord – it just never ends. It is rampant. And it is everywhere…even the church…

This past week’s events in Manchester come to mind – innocent people falling victim to distorted mindsets. My heart aches for all those whose lives have too quickly come to an end and their families who are left carry their loss for the rest of their lives.

We want peace. We strive for peace…but it is illusive. The enemy of our souls is about division, not unity. And peace will not come until he is vanquished once and for all. Peace in the here and now is found only in You and peace for all eternity is found only in You.

The Apostle Paul admonishes us in Romans 12:18,

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

Lord, may this be my prayer. May I also pray with St. Francis of Assisi, “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.” Use me to touch Your world today. Amen.

May 26th, Fri, 5:06 am

Lead, Kindly Light

Father, it has happened literally hundreds of times over the past couple of years but every day I am amazed when You wake me. It is never with a jolt, leaving my heart pounding, but it always seems that I just open my eyes, glance at the clock and it is time for me to rise. And it’s not like I need up the same time of day…but You are faithful and You love me with a strong, consistent love. Thank You, Father.

I’m sure it comes as no surprise but I love music – all kinds of music! But one of my favorites has been a part of my life for my entire life and that is hymns. From the first time my mother carried me in her arms to church, hymns have touched me.

This morning after waking, before I even made it down the hall, a hymn popped into my mind – Lead, Kindly Light. The title itself was prompted by thoughts of You, Lord, for You are surely my patient, gentle guide through each and every day.

I’ve read where this song, written in 1833 by John Henry Newman, has been appropriately sung by many in dire circumstances and rightly so. But it is also a beautiful song that gives comfort along any part of life’s journey. The first verse reads,

Lead, kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom, lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home; lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.

To me, it speaks of peace. I don’t need to see far ahead as my life moves continually onward for, Lord, one step [is] enough for me.” Lord, there is great comfort with You by my side throughout each stop of our journey together.

Mar 19th, Sun, 7:12 am