By Shirley Remmenga of Fort Collins, Colorado, USA

Mark the blameless, and behold the upright, for there is posterity for the peaceable.—Psalm 37:37

He was a young man, active in the church and interested in youth work. He came to the youth meetings, had good ideas, helped at camps, and did whatever he could to further the connection between the youth and God.

Unfortunately the atmosphere changed dramatically for him. He was blamed for a problem on a construction project. Without having a chance to tell his side of the story, he was dismissed from the project. He also was denied the privilege of joining in any youth activity.

He withdrew from all church-related activities, pushed his anger, sadness, and rejection to the back of his mind, and tried to move forward in his life. He was partly successful, but his soul was bruised, and the wound remained unhealed.

This happened three years before someone finally asked him to share his side of the story.

A way now has opened for reconciliation and healing. If all the participants will allow God to guide and direct them, this can happen. The wound will heal, an imprisoned life will be freed, and peace will be restored.

Prayer for Peace:

Wounded God, we know you weep when we separate from you and from one another. Open the paths to reconciliation, open the paths to peace.

Spiritual Practice for the Week: Welcoming Unity in Diversity

Each day this week meditate on unity in diversity. Prayerfully read Doctrine and Covenants 163:8c, which calls “the entire church to become a sanctuary of Christ’s peace, where people from all nations, ethnicities, and life circumstances can be gathered into a spiritual home without dividing walls.”

Create a large circle with your arms. See and feel the diverse people God invites inside the sanctuary of Christ’s peace represented by this circle. Who is easiest to welcome? Whom do you struggle to include? Confess the dividing walls between you and people too different or “dangerous” to invite into your spiritual home. Ask God to forgive and heal barriers that keep you and others from being one in Christ’s peace.

Peace Covenant:

Today, God, I will make a way for peace, reconciliation, and healing of the spirit.

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