#Peacemaking

Romans 12:17-21 ~ Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.  If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”says the Lord.  On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Watching football during this election year has become a love hate relationship for me. As much as I love the excitement of the game, I dread the commercial breaks, because I am guaranteed a few political commercials, generally in the form of an attack ad. These types of political ads are nothing new, but with what seems to be growing polarization in this country, they seem to irk me more than usual. After the slings and arrows that have been thrown through this election, the past few years, I decided I needed to find refuge in something. All of this drove me to pick up Dr. Rick Love’s book, “Peace Catalysts.” Within the first chapter of this book Dr. Love brings up Romans 12:17-21, which lays out those who Christians should try and make peace with, and I bet you can guess the answer. If your answer is “Who is Everybody? Alex” you won Christian Jeopardy for the day. If you just said, “all” or “everyone” you also are right, but would get a snide response from Trebek.

Note, Romans 12:18, does say that peace should be made “If it is possible.” Peace is not always possible, but we are to still try. I am guilty of jumping to the “it is not possible” so ‘why try camp’ a lot more than I should. That is not for me to decide though, as Dr. Love also says, “Peacemakers aren’t always peace achievers.” It is our job as followers of Christ to at least give peace a chance. It may not turn out, those with differing opinions may still not agree with your side or at the very least accept a difference in opinion, but as a peacemaker I need to try. As we progress into this election cycle and other times of trial and transition, even though we might not achieve peace, let us be an example to others and at least give it a shot.

Sam Jacobs

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