WE LIKE TO CALL ourselves the children of God.
It's a name that reminds us of how dearly loved we are by God. That we are all sons and daughters and have a great heavenly inheritance. That despite who we are, where we're from, what we've done or accomplished, or how much money we have, we are all made in His image.
I, too, like to be called a child of God. I like the security of knowing that I am loved.
But I've also forgotten that there's more to this title than a sense of identity and acceptance. To be the children of God is a calling, an expectation to also emulate our heavenly Father — one who reconciled the world to Himself (2 Corinthians 5:19) by the blood of the cross (Colossians 1:20).
If you're anything like me, then peace is one of the last things on your mind. I often think that things should be done a certain way or that priority should be given to certain ideas over others. I often value being right over being peaceful.
I often value being right over being peaceful.
In the process, I've lost friends I really cared about, and burned bridges with people I consider role models and mentors. I could certainly have more peace in my life.
This issue is dedicated to all those who take on the difficult burden of peacemaking. Of making peace when there is none. Of allowing space for dialogue even if there seems to be one easy answer or path. This issue is dedicated to all those who understand what it truly means to be children of God, the God of peace:
My dad, who whenever I got into a big argument with my mom, would remind me that I had to put aside my personal preferences and sense of self-righteousness to go and make things right with her. Good friends, who called me out — sometimes through teary eyes — when I had hurt or wronged them. Pastors, who didn't belittle me in public but gently rebuked me in private so I wouldn't be humiliated.
Brothers and sisters, what would it mean for us to be peacemakers? Could we not just ignore things or allow things to slide so that there is a lack of arguing, but to truly be in the business of making peace? I think if we were to take peacemaking more seriously, we would better love God and our neighbors.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called, the children of God.