Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.                                                                        Matthew 5:9

In his sermon on the mount, Jesus spoke about what later came to be called the “Beatitudes”. One of those beatitudes was the one mentioned above- peacemakers. Jesus obviously valued peace, stating that the peacemakers were to be called “sons of God”- indeed, a high calling.

I think we are all called to be peacemakers, wherever we are. Think about situations where you have a choice to escalate a tense situation with an opinion, or to deescalate the situation by remaining silent. Or, you see an injustice happening, and you have the opportunity to take up the cause of someone being oppressed.

In my role as a counselor, I have the responsibility to evaluate situations, and try to bring healing and peace, as best I can into the situation. That does not mean that I cannot call out behaviors which are destructive or harmful. On the contrary, I am compelled to speak truth into situations as I see it. Yet, how does one bring peace into situations where there is strife and conflict?

Recently, I was on a phone call where there was much pain and anger, and indeed, some yelling and raised voices. My job was to deescalate the emotional overload, and be the voice of reason since I could be objective. My role was to try to restore a sense of calm as best I could. I found myself speaking very slowly and deliberately. I tried to listen empathically since it was clear that the person on the phone was in a great deal of pain at the moment. I asked that the person just give himself some space for a while, making sure that he was going to be safe.

I continued to speak slowly and calmly, trying to model the sense of calm that the caller desperately needed. I knew that time could give this person the needed space to regain his own sense of peace. Until then, he needed me to have a sense of peace and hope that he currently could not get to- understandable in his current situation.

I mention this because at times, we all can and do play the role of peacemaker. We can only do that if we ourselves have a sense of peace that God is in control. Whatever the situation, there is a solution. Our job is to be present, physically or emotionally, until that peace that passes all understanding can be felt by those whom we are trying to comfort.

Above all, the thing we all need is peace, the peace that comes from God.

Prayer: Father, thank you for calling us to be peacemakers. Give us the strength and opportunity to be your ambassadors of peace, Amen.

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