Tuesday, December 22

Peace: the word of the year

I don't usually make new year's resolutions. They seem kind of stupid, to be honest. Most of the time I'm not particularly good at the follow-through when it comes to major changes and it's embarrassing to try to start something that you don't finish, or don't even get very far. I tried to do NaNoWriMo this past November and my kids managed to be sick just as I got going. The month was shot before it really started.

But part of the problem is that I want to make huge changes in my life that I'm not always totally motivated to make. I do great when I know that the change is important or that someone is really watching me to encourage me. If I'm doing it just for myself I don't usually get too far.

But this is different. In the past, I'm sure you've heard of people having a word for the year. It's a new way of having a New Year's resolution, but it's different. Having a word for the year means having a theme that I try to incorporate in my life and this particular theme is one that is a no-brainer for me.

A dear friend suggested that I read Walter Wink's Jesus and Nonviolence: a Third Way and I have been awakened to an entirely new set of ideas and possibilities in my life, as a result. That probably sounds ridiculous, but we live in a culture that glorifies violence, and yet many of us practice a religion that specifically discourages it. We've done a lot of justifying where Christianity and our culture meet and it doesn't sit well with me anymore.

When I talk about peace I'm talking about a way of life, not just an absence of war or disapproval of guns, though those are certainly part of it. I want to really love my neighbor as myself. I want to really lay down my life for my faith. I want to really trust in my God to provide everything I need. There is an inner peace that I want to pursue this year. One that I can see in the bIble and I can see in the lives of a few other Christians and I want to know it. I want to live it and I want to be able to teach it to my children.

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