Peace for the Children

Wednesday, June 4

6-4By Barbara Howard of Independence, Missouri, USA

But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High…

—Luke 6:35 NRSV

As I became aware of the dangers inherent in nuclear weaponry, I was grateful for the emphasis of the 2012 Peace Colloquy. I believe the lack of attention to these dangers and our cultural ignorance makes this a vital issue for people committed to the pursuit of peace.

An experience at our congregational retreat provided a greater awareness of the need to create peace for generations beyond my own.

At the ending campfire, Terry Read stood to offer the closing prayer. As he began his prayer for peace, he invited us to clasp the hand of a neighbor. I reached my hand out and found the tiny hand of Tristan Hoyt and his mother, Katie. Tristan’s small hand encircled my finger, and the yearning for peace overwhelmed me.

As I listened to the prayer, in my heart I prayed that Tristan could grow up in a world without the danger of nuclear warfare. I prayed he might know peace between nations that now seem enemies.

There we were, three generations, worshiping together in the warmth of a loving congregation. Yet, throughout the world, other generations are struggling to find enough food to eat. Poverty, disease, and continual warfare plague them.

Sometimes the issues of poverty, hunger, and war seem overwhelming. As a church “dedicated to the pursuit of peace,” we seek creative ways to address these issues. We seek to live continually in the hope and promise given by Jesus Christ.

This may be the greatest blessing we can give those to whom God calls us to minister.

Prayer for Peace Gentle and loving God, help us put peace in one another’s hands, especially the small hands of the future.

Spiritual Practice: Embodying God’s Shalom Find a way to express and embody God’s shalom. Begin by prayerfully listening to your longing for peace. Become silent and imagine you can hear the groaning of the Earth’s peoples, nations, and creatures. Prayerfully open yourself to God’s yearning for peace and the divine vision of shalom. What act of justice, kindness, healing, or peacemaking does God invite you to consider this day?

Peace Covenant Today, God, I will act courageously where peace is in jeopardy.

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1 Comment

  1. Marlene Krueger

     /  4 June 2014

    Thank you, Barbara.

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