Tag Archives: diverse community

Peace, and Personal Definitions

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, June 8, 2016

Personal Definition sign

Peace, and Personal Definitions

What is your personal definition of peace? What is peace, to you?

I have been gathering these personal definitions together for months. Getting a sample of peace here, a more complete picture of peace there.

Gathering some from here, there, and in every sort of illustration. Here is a quote from the June 7 article by Lee V. Gaines, pertaining to the Peace Vigil in the Chicago Tribune: “Jones said during the months of Lent she also asked her congregation to share their thoughts on the meaning of the word, and then started posting their response on a blog she created earlier this year.

“’People really appreciate my asking them what their personal definition of peace is, what their idea of peace is, so that’s what I’ve been doing,” she said.

“[Morton Grove Village Trustee Janine] Witko said an event like this is especially important given the divisive and polarizing discourse on display during the current election cycle. She said Morton Grove is an example of an incredibly diverse community living in relative harmony.”

I am thinking about all the definitions I have gathered together. What should I do with them?

Still thinking. Asking for suggestions of all of you! Send them to me, please. God willing, I will come up with another great idea.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

PEACE: Embracing Difference—Not Judging!

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Wednesday, May 25, 2016

PEACE: Embracing Difference—Not Judging!

peace sign, crayons

Today, I continue a series of posts from Gemini Jr. High School in Niles. (Again, a big thank you to Mr. Rich Groeling, Gemini’s principal!) This was a wonderful opportunity to engage with the young people. I encouraged them to make a sign with their personal definition of PEACE. This was a chance to get their viewpoints on PEACE.

First, George’s definition: “Peace is not simply living in amity, but recognizing that others are different and embracing it.”

Next, Ashutosh’s definition: “Peace is everyone being free, fair, justified, and not judged for their actions.”

Yes, these are two parallel definitions. Except—both overlap in one particular aspect.

Yes, we are to recognize others have differences. We are encouraged to celebrate those differences, and embrace them. (Thanks for the excellent insight, George!) What is more, we need to quash that idea of judging one another. (Yes, Ashutosh.) Sometimes, certain people can judge harshly. No!

That is what I want to promote a week from today at the Morton Grove Community Peace Vigil: hope and harmony in the midst of diversity. I am one of the organizers of the Peace Vigil (7:15 to 8:15 pm in Morton Grove, 6140 Dempster). We live in such a diverse community in the Chicago suburbs. Why not celebrate it? Lift it up!

I go back several months to the time when I just started asking people for their personal definitions of peace. I wanted to continue the conversation. Continue to encourage people to think about peace, and pursue peace. Just like our two young people today, in their definitions!  God willing, we all can continue the conversation for peace.

#PursuePEACE

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

PEACE is Sweet, and Contentment

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Monday, April11, 2016

PEACE is Sweet, and Contentment

peace and contentment

I am continuing with some special personal definitions of PEACE. These definitions came from my invitation to visit the Muslim Community Center last Sunday afternoon.

The president of the Sunday school reminded the gathered crowd that I was there to ask the simple question “What is PEACE, to you?”

Several people wrote down their simple definition, and that is wonderful! However—I did not have an opportunity to speak to them, because so many people gathered around the table where I stood. I felt so glad to have so many people get involved! This is important. Encouraging individuals to think about what PEACE means to them is key to continuing the conversation of peace and harmony. Especially, peace and harmony amidst such a diverse community!

Silvat’s personal definition: “PEACE is contentment of the soul.”

Javed’s personal definition: “PEACE is SWEET, and to be sweet.”

I would have loved to ask each of these dear people a follow-up question! Found out, further, exactly what each of them was thinking.

When I think of the sweetness of peace, I can’t help but think of honey. Sweet. Natural. And, when I used to have a bad cough or a sore throat, my grandmother used to suggest honey and lemon to soothe and coat the inside of the throat. What a wonderful mental image! Sweet—honey—peace.

The first impression that comes to be when I think of “contentment of the soul?” A long, gentle exhalation. Unwinding of my muscles. Decompressing my body in preparation for a peaceful time of meditation and prayer.

Gracious, merciful God, thank You for such vivid images. So helpful for me as I think about PEACE.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

(Thanks to everyone at the Muslim Community Center in Morton Grove, for making this week of personal definitions of PEACE possible.)