WEDNESDAY: PEACE by Julie Harrison
SCRIPTURE: Titus 2:11-3:8
“…be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone. At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.”— Titus 3:1-5
Have you ever ventured into a store on Black Friday? If you have, then you may have some stories of your own about people in conflict. As I walked into a retail store on the busiest shopping day of the year, it didn’t take long to find what I needed. As I got in line, I heard a lady yelling at someone that she had been in line first. If this were you, being accused of cutting in line, what would you do? Would you let her go in front of you or stand your ground? If you were following the verses above, you would treat her kindly, even if that meant giving up your spot. Yet doing the right thing can sometimes be hard, especially when you are not at fault. Being at peace with others can mean showing others mercy even when it is not easy. We have to remember that God gave us mercy even when we did not deserve it.
Living in peace with one another in this world can be a real test. These verses give us a recipe for living in peace with those around us. First, be ready to do whatever is good; seize every opportunity to do good in the present moment. Next, don’t slander anyone; make sure to use words of encouragement to build others up, not tear them down. Treat others kindly. And finally, always be gentle. You can’t control how others will respond to you, but if you do these things, their response will most likely be a positive one.
As we enter into this holiday season, let’s bring peace in the midst of chaos. The world around us may be going at a fast pace, but let’s try to slow down enough to notice those around us, with the intent to build them up. You never know what a difference a kind word or action can make to the stranger next to you.
Heavenly Father, please help us to live in peace with those around us.
Help our thoughts and actions to be aligned with Yours so we can make a difference to those around us.