Jesus told his disciples, “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.”Matthew 10:34
As usual Jesus knew what he was talking about. Peace doesn’t come about from a sentimental wish that people would just be friendlier. Peace arises from wielding the sword of discernment that separates the true from the false within ourselves. Because we have to go rummaging around in our beliefs, our experiences, and our understanding, courage is necessary. We will likely have to defy the ghosts of old authority figures still living in our head. We will have to ask ourselves some painful questions: What in me holds me back from loving myself fully? What obscures my light? What keeps me in hiding?
The bottom line answer is always fear. That’s understandable. We’re protecting ourselves, albeit usually unconsciously. We’ve all at one time or another been vulnerable people in a world that can be cruel. The confusion may have indeed begun with other people’s reactions to us. And yet there comes a time – many times actually — when God requires us to take a stand for our very own soul. God loves us too much to leave us in the grip of an erroneous and hurtful self-concept. God enthusiastically pokes, pushes, and/or prods us into seeing ourselves as God sees us – beloved, beautiful, and filled with creative power. And when that happens, we experience the profound peace that Jesus promised – the peace that passes all human understanding.
During this Advent week of Peace we prepare for our deeper awakening to the birth of the Christ in us. May you let God’s love show you the Truth of the good, splendid, and delightful person you are. In that reality you will find great peace.
In the Love and Light of the Christ,