17 May A Different Kind of Peacemaker
When I was young, I was the “peacemaker” among my friends. It was a constant obsession of mine to make sure I was at peace with everyone and everyone with each other. I hated for there to be any conflict or for anyone to be mad at me, and I wanted to make sure that I was always on good terms with all my friends.
I was obsessed with being a peacemaker because I cared way too much about what my friends thought of me. I couldn’t bear the thought of someone being upset with me, and if I thought I had offended one of my friends even in the slightest, I would go to them apologizing probably to the point of annoyance. My goal in doing this was to make sure that everyone liked me.
The desire to be on good terms with others in itself is not a bad thing, but here’s what I didn’t understand when I was young: the desire we have to be at peace with others should be out of an overflow of our love for God, not from a concern for ourselves.
You see, Jesus was a different kind of peacemaker. He didn’t go around spinning His wheels, trying to make sure no one was ever mad at Him. In fact, Jesus had people always mad at Him and trying to kill Him during His entire ministry. His goal was not to make people like Him but to love them, comfort them, and care for them. In this, He was striving to be at peace with everyone, including His enemies.
“. . . the desire we have to be at peace with others should be out of an overflow of our love for God, not from a concern for ourselves.”
When I was young, my motivation for wanting to be at peace with others was the fear of man; it was a selfish and inward view. Now, I’ve learned that being at peace with others is merely an outward expression of the faith we have in Christ. It is the fruit we bear in our lives as believers. It is a sign of humility, sacrifice, and the submission of putting others first and laying aside our selfish demands. In striving to be at peace with others, we are acting in obedience towards the God we serve.
We can’t ignore the fact that the only way we can have peace with others in the first place is because we have peace with God. He is Peace, and as Christians, He has given us peace beyond all our understanding that lives inside of us. This ultimate peace we have is the peace of our salvation—the assurance and hope of knowing that Christ resides in us and that we will spend eternity with Him. And He gives us this peace, not so we would hide it, keeping it inside to feel good, but that we would share it with others boldly.
“In striving to be at peace with others, we are acting in obedience towards the God we serve.”
As believers, when we strive to be like-minded with each other and settle our disagreements, even in our differences and varying viewpoints, we are directly reflecting Christ’s character and the message of salvation to the world.
“Now I appeal to Euodia and Syntyche. Please, because you belong to the Lord, settle your disagreement. And I ask you, my true partner, to help these two women, for they worked hard with me in telling others the Good News. They worked along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are written in the Book of Life. Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.” —Philippians 4:2-5
Kaitlyn is loving life with her husband Jordan. She enjoys long conversations over coffee with friends, leading her bible study group, and traveling somewhere new. She is always in pursuit of a good adventure. Kaitlyn attends our Powdersville campus.