Inspired by Isaiah 32:9-20
“The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever. My people will abide in peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.” Isaiah 32:17-18 (NRSV)
How do we know that God desires good things for us? Because he tells us so! But this is no ‘prosperity gospel’ that promises riches and power if you follow a certain formula. This is God’s ultimate vision for the world he created: that all will live in right relationship with him, which will result in peace and security forever.
According to God’s vision, peace is not a mere absence of war; ‘peace’ maintained through threats and coercion is not real peace. According to God’s vision, there will be no cacophony of voices competing for our devotion; God alone will have our devotion, and we will all do whatever God has given into our power to ensure that all are able to worship him. According to God’s vision, there will be no need to fear one another; we will be able to trust that all in the world, because of their right relationship with God, are seeking to ensure our wellbeing, just as we will seek theirs.
This is not the world as it is now, but this is the world as God envisions it, and it is the world he desires for us. Live in right relationship with God, and begin to work towards its transformation into the world it was meant to be.
Let us pray. God of peace, you desire our lives to be peaceful. Help us to live in righteousness, that we may show those who live in fear and chaos that there is a better way. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.