In just a few days we’ll be celebrating International Day of Peace and World Gratitude Day on the 21st. These are two important things to celebrate for many reasons, but most of all because without peace and gratitude the world would fall apart. I believe they’re like the glue that not only holds us all together, but makes us stronger than we were before. Today I have a quote for us to contemplate:
“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.” Eleanor Roosevelt
Eleanor Roosevelt captures the truth about peace here-it’s not something that happens or can grow by itself, it takes work. Throughout the Bible we find people who need to make peace with each other. Think of Esau and Jacob, David and Saul, Paul/Saul and the Apostles, the list goes on. None of these people had it easy when they said they wanted to make things right. In the case of David and Saul, they never were able to fully come to peace together.
Peace isn’t easy. It’s not easy to forgive, make amends, start over or rebuild from the ground up. Yet often that’s what has to happen. Because as abstract as peace may seem, it takes a lot of work for it to be a reality in daily life. In order for us to have true peace in our relationships and in the world, it will take daily commitment and action to achieve.
One of the easiest ways to create peace is by focusing on being grateful. When we’re focused on what the other person has done right, the effort they’re putting forth or their heart in the situation, it’s a lot easier to keep the peace. Not only is it important to work to have peace among ourselves, but it’s also important to express our gratitude for each other. It’s as simple as sharing a compliment or being honest about how much an action or word meant to us to not only reinforce the peace, but encourage and uplift the other person.
This week I challenge you to look at the relationships you have with those in your life. Are you a peace-working person who is grateful for the things and people in their life? Or do you have a lot of work to do to repair these relationships?