I was listening to some politician who was talking about the horrible events all over the world last week and he said something like “Don’t forget that peace is not a natural state of affairs. Peace has to be worked at and in some cases fought for.” It seemed a striking piece of insight from a politician but having looked around a bit (yep, that would be Google then) I found this.
“The state of peace among men living side by side is not the natural state; the natural state is one of war. This does not always mean open hostilities, but at least an unceasing threat of war. A state of peace, therefore, must be established, for in order to be secured against hostility it is not sufficient that hostilities simply be not committed; and, unless this security is pledged to each by his neighbour (a thing that can occur only in a civil state), each may treat his neighbour, from whom he demands this security, as an enemy.” Kant
So, Kant then – not Liam Fox, either way, there is something here I think. We talk so much about peace and wanting peace yet, at the first opportunity everything seems to collapse into rubble and fighting. This can be on a world stage or in our personal lives. So I was struck by something that Jesus said.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.John 14 v 27
It’s probably significant then that when Jesus talks about the peace he gives he says it is nothing like the peace that this world talks about – which seems to be fragile and dependant on circumstances, mood, and whoever is around to take advantage of the vulnerable for money. Jesus is talking about something that only he can leave us because he is different to us, he can do more than us. It is HIS peace, based in him and who he is, thinking more, loving more and we are safe there. He left it with us to give us comfort and we should take comfort from it.