Speak the truth to one another, render in your gates judgments that are true and make for peace. Zechariah 8:16 

Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding. Romans 14:19

Peace is a goal that we need to pursue. It is not something that just happens if we just avoid arguments and disagreements. It is not the absence of dissent, but rather something that is positive and to be sought. When we were baptized into Christ, we all became part of one big family. We all share the wonderful heritage that we didn’t have to earn. We receive this heritage and become part of the big family through God’s grace.

So often we let small disagreements and divisions separate us, instead of remembering that we are all one body. Better we should be pursuing peace among ourselves. We can encourage and build up one another instead of being critical and tearing down. Our actions and behaviors make a difference as we welcome all into fellowship. Often, we cause confusion by our behavior, saying that we welcome all, and yet not acting that way. As one writer said “ there are more important things to consider than satisfying our own needs. We are (all) part of the kingdom and what we do is significant.”

Just as the judges who sat at the gate and rendered judgements, we need to be truthful in our dealings with others, doing what we can to build each other up. All of us are precious children of God, worthy of living in peace with each other.

Lord, help us repent from all the ways we resist doing what we know can make peace in and among ourselves. Guide us to speak truth, to make good judgments reflecting your grace. Teach us the power of creating mutual understanding. Amen. 

Chris Gabel