22 07 2013

Reality always looks different than it does on television. The roar of the fighter jets screamed in my ears. Soldiers stood at attention, guns aimed, suspicion written all over their faces. The borders were places of palpable tension as we crossed back and forth between Israeli and Palestinian controlled land. The Middle East is a powder keg. What seems remote on our nightly news is real, scary, and complicated.

We sat in a park overlooking the old city of Jerusalem. The Jewish tour guide traveling with us started by giving us a primer in the complexities of the Middle East peace process. Time passed as he outlined idea after solution to the questions of land rights, divine promises, and claim over holy ground. The more I listened, the clearer the answer became. No man made solution was ever going to completely ease the tensions that define life in this land. The only answer for true peace must be found in the person of Jesus.

“For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility.” – Ephesians 2:14

We don’t have to go far from home to see the aching need for His peace. Our news, and its reality, is filled with the echoes, violence, tension, and stubbornness of hostility that divides us and calls us to suspicion and distrust. It doesn’t matter if the issue is prejudice, abortion, politics, defining marriage, or gun control. Education, discussion, and tolerance alone will never provide the deep and lasting peace we crave. Jesus is the only answer. Jesus is the only way to peace. Because Jesus is the only one who is powerful enough to break down the wall of hostility that divides us.

My Jesus Resolution today is to declare peace. The transformation that occurs when I surrender to Christ begins not with changing the world, but with changing me. The answer is not found in others learning to see my point of view, but in my eyes being made over with divine sight. There is an urgency in knowing that Jesus is the answer. How much violence, how much hatred, how much hostility could be remedied by the blood of Jesus if I had the courage to declare His peace to those who still see a wall instead of a cross?



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