Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, March 31, 2016
PEACE, Despite the Unfair World
Today, I return to St. Viator’s High School in Arlington Heights. Their principal, Fr. Corey Brost, gave me the opportunity to hang out in the lunch room and talk briefly with anyone who came up to the table I had set up on one side of the large room.
I’ll be featuring two personal definitions of PEACE per day. This was a wonderful chance to talk with young people and get their viewpoints on PEACE.
Barbara’s personal definition: “PEACE is knowing you are doing the right thing.”
As I asked her for more information about this excellent definition, Barbara said, “It doesn’t matter what is going on in the world as long as you know you are right with God. Whatever kind of crap is going on in the whole world doesn’t matter!”
That is a great insight. Even though all kinds of “crap” is going on all around us, it doesn’t matter—ultimately. (And, thanks, Barbara, for a great term for all the awful stuff happening in the world today.) God’s hand is on us. God is with us. Yes, we can go through all kinds of stuff. But, if we are right with God, we have the opportunity to have God’s peace. In the middle of crap!
Elise’s personal definition: “PEACE is when everyone is treated fairly and equally.”
I could tell Elise was a little hesitant. (Or, maybe shy, or maybe because I was a strange adult. I tried to make her comfortable!) She said, “If everyone is treated in the same way, everyone won’t feel badly.”
How true, Elise. Unfair treatment causes people to get angry. Disgruntled. Even, violent. All those things are the opposite of PEACE. Unfair treatment means there is one group of people that has power-over the second group of people. Unequal power often leads to mistreatment, which means someone may get so angry that fighting may break out. All that separation, alienation and disagreement means one thing: NO PEACE.
Dear God, thank You for giving these young people such great ideas. Please let them continue the conversation about PEACE, wherever they go. It can be as simple as sharing a smile, holding a door, or taking a little time to help an older person. Lord, help us all to continue to #PursuePEACE.
Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.