Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Personal Peace (06/01/06)
TITLE: Peaceful in all Circumstances
By Francis Monari
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So you ask what am I to do? I respond, create your own resource center of quiet and be calm when buffeted by all sorts of situations. Is that possible? Oh yes! It is not just possible it is real. I believe and indeed do know that for one to be peaceful, you do not need the world. For example, Osama has struck and hundreds of thousands of people lost their lives; a hurricane has cleared thousands of people; or a house has collapsed killing thousands. How do you react to this news? Shock, anger, disbelief? I would the same, but what is important is what you do with the news, because that determines how you respond and live your life.
I have seen men and women who are paralyzed because they can never bring themselves to the level of accepting that they do not have total control over situations. I think this is unfortunate for us Christians especially. If only we can accept our poverty and be ‘FROGs’ – Fully Relying On God, then we would be peace-initiators because all would experience peace by being with or around us.
Simply, what am saying is that personal peace depends entirely on me, my perception and faith convictions. No one, not even the terrorist or torturer can take away my peace; nor would anyone give me my peace. Peace is a gift that Jesus gave to us all who trust in him, but to live it is our daily choice. If we accept our situation and have confidence in him, then we will be peaceful in all circumstances including when we are facing a lot of agony. Remember however, that this peace does not take away the pain, meaning that we will feel the pain, betrayal, rejection …but we will never be bitter or vengeful. Peace is the pillar of our life-line as Christians and we should pray constantly for this.
One thing that I detest most is the fact that we can very easily pray for peace to reign in the hearts of the war torn countries of Africa and the Middle East, while we are not Seeing Eye to eye with our brothers and sisters. Many of us Christians do not understand our calling and so, we end up hiding from the truth and living a farce. I want to assert that you can never be peaceful if you are not living the truth. If you do anything that is not right and deceive others around it, you start an internal process of self denial and rejection. With this situation, whether you live in the Westminster Cathedral or at the Basilica of St. Peter, you will never experience peace. I think, I would even say that peace is the product of living and walking in the truth, otherwise, did not Jesus say that he is the only one who will give us true peace, he who is the Truth, the Way and the Life?
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