March 26 Lent Devotional

The Peacemakers
March 26, 2021
By Pastor Lesly Broadbent

Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.

Throughout this week we have been examining the meaning of peace and the making of peace, but we little has been said about the methods or ways of making peace. Today, that is where we turn our attention.

The making of peace first begins in our own hearts by finding peace with God and with ourselves. Most of us realize we have conflicts within our own hearts – bitterness, resentment, anger, unforgiveness, fear – that easily break out upon the people closest to us. I say it often. When we continue to stuff our own emotions deep down into our souls those emotions are going to come out one way or another, and they often come out in unexpected and inappropriate ways and times. Dealing with these deep internal conflicts is essential in making peace. And dealing with them means confessing them to God, giving them to Him and asking Him to redeem them in your lives.
Recognizing that we possess such deep internal conflicts is not easy. How can you tell that you have such internal conflicts? One sign is to place blame on others. Listen to the words of one noted psychologist:  

One of the symptoms of a personal failure is the desire to change the social order, usually
in one’s immediate environment. The youngsters suffering from personal failure, often
want to change their families, not themselves.  The student who fails in her studies wants
to change her teachers or the grading system, not herself.  The employee who fails to get
the desired salary wants to improve his employer, not himself.

Now don’t get me wrong. We can’t postpone service to others or concern for our world until we have reached personal perfection, but we would be well served to first search our own souls before we seek to correct others.

The second part of becoming a peacemaker is that we will likely need to join some larger movement. Being a pastor I think the Church is the best option when it comes to peacemaking impacts on our community. Engaging in our missions ministries, financially supporting our missionaries deployed around the globe on three different continents, and engaging hands on with our ministries to the poor and disenfranchised in Oklahoma City are all vital peacemaking ministries at First Church.
And finally, being a peacemaker means daily practicing simple acts of kindness. Acts of kindness begin to break the chains of hate that imprison so many people. If we will see ourselves as peacemakers, wherever we go we will discover there are opportunities all around us. From a smile at a clerk to a friendly gesture in traffic to a letter to a senator. These are the acts of peacemaking that bring about peace in our world.

I pray you will join us in worship this Sunday at Oklahoma City First Church as we explore the great call of becoming peacemakers.
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