Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 18, 2019
When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. Luke 10:5-6
Peace is a tricky word to define. On the one hand, we can think of peace as the absence of conflict, such as the end of a war as a form of peace. Yet the more I reflect upon it, the more I am convinced that true peace is not as much an absence as it is a presence. As we see in Luke 10, peace is found in the presence of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, in and through the lives of his followers.
The reason we read about the sending out of the 72 thousands of years later isn’t because of the strategic leadership, salesmanship, or financial means that these individuals possessed. The primary reason they encountered such success and people welcomed their message so freely was that in the lives of these early disciples, people encountered Jesus. It was his peace that they found so moving and transforming.
In fact, I believe this was the primary filter by which these people were selected and released into leadership within the life of the church. They were called into service in God’s kingdom because they loved Jesus and were people who knew and embodied the peace of his Kingdom.
If any part of you hears this story today and longs for some version of it to be true in your life, take this essential truth to heart: before you do great things for God and his Kingdom, you must have a life filled with the peace and presence of Jesus. Simply put, you cannot invite someone to experience something that you haven’t experienced yourself!
With every passing day the world seems to have a new conflict that has emerged, a new act of violence or natural disaster. Yet into the midst of this chaos, the Lord sends his people out as heralds of another Kingdom, another way of life that is richer and truer and deeper. We are sent out, Jesus reminds us, “like lambs among wolves” (Luke 10:3). Yet we are lambs who are protected by the Good Shepherd, who promises to care for his lambs and seeks after us when we lose our way (Luke 15:4).
You are always safe in the Kingdom of God. As a result, go forth boldly into the world as an instrument of peace in Jesus’ name!
Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy. O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love; for it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life. Amen. (Traditional prayer, commonly attributed to St. Francis of Assisi.)
Where is the Lord’s peace at work in your own heart and life?
Peace is found in the presence of Jesus, the Prince of Peace. #peace #wisdomhunters #Jesus
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