There are wars raging in every corner of our planet at this moment.
War has been a part of human existence from the very beginning. And in places where conflicts are raging now, people know from their own grim experience that war is a very hellish thing that should be avoided at all cost.
Here in the US, we’ve been involved in hundreds of wars but have not had the fighting come to our shores since Pearl Harbor.
And before that, one must go all the way back to the War of 1812 to find a time when a foreign adversary attacked us right here, where we live.
And so the thought of wars may not evoke much of a response from many Americans.
But those who have lived through–or are living through wars right now–know full well what a horrible, suffocating, life-stealing tragedy war is.
From a Faith perspective, Peace and Peace-making must be our goal.
The Psalmist hoped–as have countless men and women of faith–that The Divine One will, one day, put an end to war and the instruments of war.
9 Come now and look upon the works of the Lord, *
what awesome things he has done on earth.
10 It is he who makes war to cease in all the world; *
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear,
and burns the shields with fire.
11 “Be still, then, and know that I am God; *Psalm 47: 9-11
I will be exalted among the nations;
I will be exalted in the earth.”
Does this hope in the heart of Humanity that God will one day put an end to war mean that we should simply wait patiently for that coveted day to arrive?
Does it mean that we should not work for Peace nor attempt to be instruments of reconciliation among our fellows and even among Nations?
It cannot mean those things.
Peace must be our goal.
As I write this, the U.S. is closer to an actual shooting war than we have been in a long time.
One of the things that is so frustrating and disquieting is that it’s possible–even likely when one looks at the facts–that our elected leaders are foolishly spoiling for a war.
If that’s the case, those in our country who have the power to set in motion conflicts and wars are certain to get their wish.
If so, it will be yet one more time when those who, like the writer of Psalm 47, will have their desire for Peace thwarted while humanity descends, once more, into the dark and desolate hellscape of war.
© 2020 The Fellowship of St Francis, Inc.