Peace, Be Still
Sometimes I want to stay on top of current events; and sometimes I want to plug my ears to drown it all out. Impeachment hearings, wars on multiple fronts, protests, climate change, the national debt, instability in entire regions, healthcare, justice reform, gun violence…
I can also have the same attitude about my own life. Hyper vigilance (leading to despair)? Or let the proverbial chips fall where they may? Serve here, connect with friends there, work out, eat healthy, homeschool my kids, set long-term goals, plan date nights, get the dog her heart worm pill, read books, SLEEP, fold laundry…
Reflecting on these tendencies, I’m drawn to Mark 4. After speaking to crowds all day, Jesus gets into a boat with his disciples and takes a nap, trusting these fishermen know their way around a sea. A storm comes, they are tossed about and legitimately fear for their lives. In desperation, they wake Jesus. Doesn’t He realize we are perishing? (Does He see the news? Is He present in my day?)
Jesus offers his first rebuke to the chaos that surrounds the disciples and speaks into their reality. “Peace! Be still!” He offers his next rebuke to His disciples (and to me). “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?”
The second Sunday of Advent reminds me that the Prince of Peace has come. It draws me to reflect on the idea that He is still here, in our midst, bringing His kingdom to pass, graciously inviting us in the milieu of this world to speak peace in His name.
Advent also points to the peace that will be perfected at His triumphant return, to establish His eternal kingdom – no more chaos, only order. Peace. How might we surrender the storms of our life to Jesus and stand in awe with the disciples, “Who then is this, that even the wind and sea obey him?”