Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: Hebrews 12:13
We are all on the pursuit of something. Some people are pursuing fame and recognition. Others are seeking riches and wealth. Some would pursue security and refuge, but today’s scripture tells us that none of these things are the priority. It says that we should be chasing after peace! Not only are we to be looking wherever we go for peace to be there, we are to be chasing after it to keep it in our presence all the time. This isn’t just a calm, quiet kind of peace either. This is the biblical kind of peace. Shalom! It is the Hebrew word for peace that means wholeness or completeness, nothing missing and nothing broken. It’s the kind of completeness that we have in our salvation in Christ Jesus.
Imagine for a minute what life would be like if there was nothing missing, and nothing broken. How much different would life be if it was whole and complete? It seems impossible to possess such a position. However, scripture says we should be running after it, so it must be attainable.
This phrase “pursue peace” is repeated in 1 Peter chapter 3. Peter gives some practical steps on just how to pursue peace. In verses 8-10 of 1 Peter 3, Peter gives a list ways of life that bring peace. First of all he says to be of one mind. As believers in Christ Jesus we are to be in agreement and unity with each other, to function in this world as one body on God’s mission. Secondly, Peter says to have compassion for one another, to love as a family being tenderhearted, courteous, and not repaying evil for evil, but blessing each other. The passage says we are called to these things. If you have ever wondered what your calling is, here it is plain and clear. Lastly he says anyone who wants to love life and see good days should hold back from speaking evil and deceitful things. Turn away from evil and turn toward good. It seems like a long list, but basically it is being kind and reaching out to others and not speaking out any evil thoughts. Peace is found in walking out the calling of God in life every day.
Today I want to encourage you to not only look for peace everywhere you go, but also pursue it in every relationship and conversation you have. Hold on to it by turning your focus from yourself and your problems to others. Reach out to hurting people and make them your priority. Be compassionate and tenderhearted to those who are around you. Lastly, put away all evil talking whether it’s gossip, condemnation, or complaining. Start living a whole and complete life today!
Today’s scripture reading: Hebrews 12:12-17