I went a way this weekend to celebrate 25 years of marriage with my husband. We went to our favorite place, our favorite woods in Pennsylvania. They call to us. They draw us in and envelop us with their serenity. The world and the cares of this life melt away almost instantaneously as we deeply breathe the hemlock infused, mossy, terra firma, feel the chill of the crisp, autumn breeze and listen to glassy cascade of the nourishing, river rhythm.
Much of the four days and three nights we were immersed in peace that seemed to be worlds away from our home, deciphering our lives and bringing crucial knowledge to solve all of our problems. Taking time to pray, to give thanks and to read deep, Christian, men and women’s thoughts. I do not just desire it, I need it to survive this ruthless world. But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray. Luke 5:16- I find myself in good company.
Of course this kind of peace cannot be had all the time or at will…at least in this way. There is a peace from Him that surpasses our understanding and guards our hearts and minds. It isn’t necessarily felt at first, but it is remembered and called upon even in the midst raging chaos. Chaos like this morning’s news. Random devastation of historical proportion produced by a human’s free will.
So I, so you, must go deep. We must extend into the compost of love, mercy, and grace that is not from this world but available to us through Jesus’ wounding for all of the atrocities of the world, this one included. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27.
This peace, this paradox, is the tangible peace we have accessible to us now and for eternity. This is world peace.