Is Peace Possible? – Israel, ISIS and Ferguson

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What is Peace? Is it merely something to hope for or is it actually attainable? If you read or watch the news for just a few minutes it looks like the whole world is falling apart. Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic terrorist group in Israel, is responsible for countless suicide bombings, rocket strikes, unjustified beheadings and has even been accused of using children as shields in battle. The armed forces of Israel are also guilty of great injustice. Israeli forces have killed nearly two thousand innocent civilians in their recent bombings in Gaza. ISIS, the self proclaimed Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, have been murdering Christians, Jews, Yazidis and anyone else that doesn’t support their radical Jihadist Islamic views. They’ve kidnapped their children, raped their women and they’ve done it all in the name of God. On the European front we see Russia invading the Ukraine with force, intimidation and the real threat of a much larger war to come. In our own country we see racial riots and unrest in Ferguson. How could anyone in these circumstances ever experience Peace?

In America, we’ve convinced ourselves that we live in Peace and we even pride ourselves as the guardians of Peace, freedom and the pursuit of happiness. Our American worldview believes that everyone deserves Peace no matter their skin color, gender, orientation, religion or economic status. The problem however, is that very few of us, if any, do anything to strive for Peace.

Peace is so much more than a treaty between people groups. It’s bigger and it’s smaller. Most of the time we talk about Peace on the “macro” level. Peace between countries and cultures, races and religions, but that kind of Peace is only one type of Peace. Jesus illustrates that his followers should be salt and light to the world. “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at Peace with each other” (Mk 9:50). The Greek word for Peace here is “eireneuo” (i-rane-yoo’-o), and it literally means to make or cultivate Peace. As Jesus followers we are called to make Peace, but how can we do this? You and I alone probably aren’t going to solve the problems in Iraq, Syria, Gaza, Israel, Ukraine, Russia or Ferguson. Although we should strive for this, that kind of “macro” Peace requires lots of time and resources. I believe Jesus is calling us as individuals to bring about Peace on a “micro” level.

At Peacemakers we’ve learned that for millions of Americans, Peace is found in a warm meal, a safe place and mentors for children or even just someone to talk to. What most of us don’t realize is that a majority of the world is at war with the fear that they won’t be able to feed, protect or provide for their families. With locations in seven states, we provide direct services and counseling for over two thousand people on a weekly basis. Peace isn’t won with war it’s created with compassion. When you donate to Peacemakers you are creating Peace with your compassion. Would you join us and donate so that together we can bring Peace?

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