October 23, 2019
Our Canadian federal election has taken place, for the most part peacefully (despite the war of words and suspicions of some unethical practices). We continue to pray for “all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Ti 2:2). Sometimes when I wake up in the morning, I thank God for the peaceful night, aware that elsewhere, others can’t sleep because of gunfire and bombs. Many refugees have fled to Canada seeking this kind of peace. This external, societal peace is good and pleasing to God, “who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Ti 2:3-4).
Paul’s instruction to Timothy implies that societal peace is a setting God creates so believers can disciple those who don’t know Him yet. Knowledge of God and His plan for salvation through Jesus activates Jesus’ peace initiative, in which He came to earth as the Prince of Peace who would reconcile people to God. That sort of peace begins in the heart of an individual as a free gift from Jesus that persists and overcomes worldly troubles (Jn 14:27). Then it spreads to others as these peacemakers, called “sons of God” (Mt 5:9), sow peace, raising a harvest of righteousness (Ja 3:17-18).
There are plenty of refugees living in the peaceful land of Canada who are not experiencing the blessing of true peace because others whom they love are left behind. They often feel guilty for being safe, and they may be tormented by frequent phone calls detailing the latest atrocities and asking for help when they are unable to help. In some cases, they may fear being cursed by jealous people at home for having succeeded in gaining residency in Canada.
Even families who immigrate may find that peace eludes them when the grandparents are still in the old country
or part of the family has citizenship and another part doesn’t. With torn hearts, they bear heavy burdens.
Our God takes His share of our burdens and invites us to partake of His rest (Mt 11:28-30). Read aloud the Father’s description of His Son, Jesus (Mt 12:18-21):
“Behold, My servant whom I have chosen,
My beloved with whom My soul is well pleased.
I will put My Spirit upon Him,
and He will proclaim justice to the Gentiles.
He will not quarrel or cry aloud,
nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets;
a bruised reed He will not break,
and a smoldering wick He will not quench,
until He brings justice to victory;
and in His name the Gentiles will hope.”
Worship this God, the King of kings…
- Whose Kingdom is everlasting peace (Isa 9:7),
- Who will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick,
- Who causes justice to triumph and
- Whose name is the source of all hope.
Pray for the “sons of God,” followers of Jesus, to redeem the time and capitalize on this period of social peace by sowing peace among refugees and immigrants who need Jesus’ free gift of peace.
Pray that in Canada’s relatively peaceful society, Muslim and Christian refugees alike from war-torn nations will come to experience true peace in the name of the Prince of Peace. Pray especially for the Kurds, whose homeland is currently under attack.