Waging peace in a violent world is difficult if not near impossible. Hatred and distrust run deep and its cycle miring people in unending conflict. Self serving attitudes coupled with passion for power oppress others or seek to usurp the oppressor only to become one.
Waging peace is different for different people and countries. As Americans we forge peace through strength; strength in our military, strength in our resolve, strengthen in our cause of liberty, and strength in our moral imperative. But the clarity of that call diminishes or rises depending on our president.
Waging peace as a believer looks absurd, because our understanding of peace is different than the world's. Our peace comes from within, born by the spirit of God, and directed outward to a world who desperately wants it but can't achieve it. We understand peace to begin, not with the cessation of host utilities with our enemies but with our reconciliation with God. The problems of the world will never be answered until the problem with God is fixed.
For this reason Jesus didn't send the disciples into the world to make political changes. Those kinds of changes are temporary at best until the hearts of the people are changed. Our efforts are in vain if we stop the gun fire with a smile on our face if we have not dealt with the core issue of sin before holy God.
Waging peace comes at a price. The world doesn't want our message, but we are compelled to proclaim Christ crucified. We are to expect animosity, resentment, resistance, imprisonment, and even death. The cost is high, but so are the stakes.
The Apostle Paul said he was a prisoner for the sake of the Gentiles. He was a prisoner to Christ, his mission, his love, and his grace. He was a prisoner of Rome for daring to share a different worldview then what was accepted. He didn't do it with hatred or force of will. He didn't do it for personal gain or popularity. He did it for the Gentiles, so that they might find peace with God and others.
If we waged war like the disciples how would that change the way we look at immigration, Israel/Palistinian conflict, Democrat/Republican divide, and our neighbors? How would we treat our estranged families, the homeless, and homosexuals? How would we interact with the Buddhist or Muslim? What would we be will to sacrifice for the cause of Christ?
Waging peace is a Christian imperative. Are we a part of the peace process, or have we thrown in with the world. Whose prisoner are we willing to become? I'm just saying...