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Topic: Peace (03/15/04)
TITLE: P E A C E
By Phyllis Inniss
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How do we find peace in this tumultuous world? Wars are raging across the globe as nations are fighting each other e.g. Israel and Palestine; internal conflicts are brewing Ė Iraq, Haiti. Racial tensions as in Mozambique and other parts of Africa and political strife is unsettling the South American country of Venezuela. Families in these war-torn nations feel a sense of hopelessness and despair as they lose children, parents and other relatives.
In my own country of Trinidad and Tobago there is an upsurge of crime that is unprecedented in our history and families are living in fear for the safety of themselves and their loved ones. Members of the different denominations call for prayer and there are many prayer groups that pray for the peace of the nation and safety for all.
However, when we look at the bible and we read Godís Word, we see repeatedly that God has asked for obedience from his followers and we wonít find peace if we continue to disregard his Word. It will be like spinning top in mud, according to the saying. When I returned to Trinidad from the U.K. after an absence of seventeen years, I couldnít believe how much people had changed. A new generation had grown up and I noticed that parents seemed lax to discipline their children and they were highly offended if other members of the family tried to do so. In my day, even strangers could admonish a child if he/she were doing something wrong Neighbours were almost like an extended family and children would stop any naughty act they were engaged in if a neighbour happened to pass by.
Since then, one and a half generations ago, people are more aggressive, rude, inconsiderate, selfish and violent. Domestic violence has increased to unimaginable proportions, some ending in murder and the resulting parentless children, if they are not killed too, have a bleak future. The situation is frightening for these youngsters and the rest of society.
Prayer is the only answer. I had to make a resolve to pray at all times. I remember when I was young lashing out in anger because someone had said something hurtful and spiteful.to me or about me. Family members who should be there as your shield would use their tongues as weapons against you. How do you fight back, if you were not so inclined. They set out to humiliate and ridicule you, so you reduce the number of hours you spent with them. They would plot behind your back and scheme to put you in the wrong and then pretend not to know anything about any plot or scheme.
I soon began to realize that it was a culture that had developed over the years; that Christ played less of an important part in the lives of some of the people. Iíve heard people from other churches complain that when it came to sharing the Peace with other members, some would share only with certain persons in the congregation and not with those who were nearby.
As I turned to God for help in these situations, the anger began to recede. I prayed for wisdom to deal with these hurts and God has led me to meeting people similar to my way of thinking. We share experiences that are similar, we exchange books and material about Christian thought and now Iím writing articles as a member of Faithwriters.com for which Iím extremely happy. During the last several years Iíve found a peace that even annoys some people. It is the peace that passes all understanding. I want to share it with others, but when peopleís psyche is bombarded with hateful thoughts and anger, only Christ can change their way of thinking. Only He can bring them peace.
I canít remember where I picked up this quote: ďIt is peace that you need Ė Heavenís forgiveness and peace and love in the soul. Money cannot buy it, intellect cannot procure it, wisdom cannot attain it; you can never hope, by your own efforts, to secure it. But God offers it to you as a gift, Ďwithout money and without price.í ď