Psalm 34:14, “Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.”
There are those who are peacemakers: solvers of problematic situations, negotiators, mediators, and conflict resolutionist. What a place they have in God’s Kingdom; but, I am focused today on peace maintainers. We are called by God not only to make peace with others but maintain it. Pursue it. By definition, to pursue something is to persist, to follow, or to seek after. The sentence that comes to my mind in regard to pursue is, “He was in hot pursuit of the suspect.”
You’ve watched CSI or Criminal Minds. Those guys do not stop until the criminal is apprehended and behind bars. So, what about seeking peace? What about the pursuit of peace?
It is more than making it, it is about keeping it. There are those around us we must learn to harmoniously live with on a daily basis; and sometimes it is a tough task. The resolution part is actually much easier than the maintenance. The question becomes not so much how to solve conflict as to how to live beside it in peace.
Romans 12:18, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”
My eyes fall on the words, “as far as it depends on you.” Knowing what part we play in the conflict is just as important if not the most important part of maintaining peace. Our natural instincts cause us to focus on what is being done to us and how it impacts our daily lives.
“He is unfair to me.”
“She is always making me feel this way.”
“He never gives me the chance to…”
“She is constantly on my back.”
Step back and ask yourself “Why is he unfair to me? What do I do that makes him unfair to me? Why is she always making me feel this way? What do I do that makes her act this way?” See, until we understand our part, we are simply asking someone else to compromise without giving any skin into the situation ourselves.
Newton’s third law of motion can relate to people as well. People react to particular actions. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. When you sit in a chair, your body exerts a downward force on the chair and the chair exerts an upward force on your body. The two forces result in an interaction – a force on the chair and a force on your body. Action and reaction are the two forces.
When we apply Newton’s law to everyday life, we realize there is something we do (action) to make someone else respond negatively or positively (reaction). Maintaining peace comes into play by a realization of our actions.
Look at your relationships today at home, work, school, church, and in social settings. How do you deal with the people around you? What part do you play in certain areas of conflict and how can you change to make a difference. Become a Peace Maintainer.