First Say, Peace…

“Whatever house you enter, first say, `Peace be to this house.’ “If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you.          

I used to live next door to a ten year old pitcher named David who had had a small trampoline. He jumped on it once in a while, but most often he tipped it against his fence and played catch with a baseball by himself. He learned exactly where to hit that trampoline to get the ball to return fast or slow, high or low. He worked at it for hours at a time, and eventually he became a very good pitcher.     

I thought of him today when I read this verse. When Jesus sent out the seventy, his instruction was to pray a blessing of peace on any house that they entered and share the Peace of God they had found in Jesus and —If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him…. By a man of peace, Jesus meant a man who was disposed toward peace. It seems true that most people have a disposition toward peace. Some walk in peace and it seems nothing can shake them from it. This is God’s peace, issued to His children by the Prince of Peace. Others are easily shaken, disturbed by anything insignificant thing. Some are spiritual terrorists, enemies of Peace. Are you a person of Peace, a vessel of the Peace of God?     

We’ve been sent out to the villages and to the cities and to many places were peace is hard to find. As Christians, we are to be distinguished by the Peace which abides in us. Peace in times of trouble amazes people. It is a curious thing to them, and it is used by the Holy Spirit to draw them to the Lord.     

When you go where the Lord sends you, do you offer His Peace?  Is your life the image of his peace. Peace is the living testimony of faith in our lives. We can claim faith, but if our claim is valid, it will be easily seen in us as the Peace of God which passes understanding.  Little David knew that the ball would never return to him if he never threw it. God’s peace will sometimes return us, rejected when offered. We cannot let the threat of rejection cause so much fear in us that we hesitate to offer the Lord’s Peace. David’s pitching skills wouldn’t have progressed much if he had simply held the ball. We cannot hold the Peace of God and grow as Christians. We cannot bear fruit in the Kingdom if we won’t offer to others what God has given us. We don’t need to judge whether someone is worthy of God’s Peace, we don’t need to analyze whether they will receive or reject it. We don’t need to take it personally if they leave the gift of peace God offers them unopened.      

We do need to offer the Peace of God. We need to share in a spirit of peace, not condemnation, the testimony of God’s Peace in our lives and how it came to us.     

Whatever house you enter, first say, peace….

At Peace with God,

Steve

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