THERE’S WAR IN PEACE
Monday in the Fifteenth Week of Ordinary Time
My dear encountered couples:
Religion and politics are two subjects that many people advise not to touch. Their reason is that everyone has his and her own opinions and ideas about religion and politics, and if we discuss them, we will quite likely end up in an argument, one that could result not in agreement but in bad feelings towards one another.
Jesus said to his apostles: “Do not suppose that my mission on earth is to spread peace. My mission is to spread, not peace, but division.” Then he goes on to tell them that even people in the same household will become at odds with one another because of him.
And that has proved true. A Christian and a non-Christian can become very furious with each other over their ideas and lifestyles. Even two Christians can end up on very unfriendly terms over what they believe to be the teachings of Christ. Jesus came to teach us truth and give us some of heaven’s peace, but he knew what we would do with his truth and how much war home and abroad would result from it. The coming of Christ greatly upset the world. It opposed the values of the world, the values of selfishness. Christ teaches giving, the world teaches taking.
Jesus says, “It is in sincere and generous giving that we will truly receive what we need.” The world says, “Help yourself before someone else beats you to it, and get as much as you can regardless of the good of others.” Jesus brought peace, but for us to experience it we will first have to undergo conflict within ourselves and with others. Falsehood and selfishness don’t give up easily.
When you pray for peace, pray also for the courage and endurance it takes to make it happen. May heaven’s peace be with you!
Let me close with a prayer from St. Ignatius: “Take Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all that I have and possess. Thou hast given all to me. To Thee, O Lord, I return it. All is Thine, dispose of it wholly according to Thy will. Give me Thy love and Thy grace, for this is sufficient for me.”