We May Be Without Chill, But We Are Not Without Peace

Yeah, I know. When you see me super outspoken and pissed that we are not allowing refugees in this country, or that we are ripping immigrant families apart, or that we are cutting funding for children’s health care, or that we are the number one arms dealer in the world, or that we have real life Nazis on the streets these days, or that mass gun shootings of children at school is the norm – you think I must lack peace in my life.

I shouldn’t be so fiery; no one will listen to me.

If I really tried to follow the ways of Jesus, I wouldn’t be so angry and outspoken all of the time. Real followers of Jesus don’t make blanket statements regarding the gross oppression caused by the religious elite. Real followers of Jesus quietly disagree with racism. Real followers of Jesus never offend the oppressor, because, open dialogue trumps direct action when it comes to bigotry. Real followers of Jesus avoid making the world uncomfortable.

I kind of understand the false logic behind these assumption, but real talk, statements like the above are nothing but a smoke screen to hide our cowardice.

I am sorry - okay I am not really that sorry - but you are straight up wrong on this one.

Y’all, there is a difference between ignoring the hurt in our world, and having inner peace.

Ignorance is not peace.

Peace is not playing nice with everyone. Peace is not taking the middle ground. Peace is not standing in silence. Peace is action that puts loving others first regardless of who we make uncomfortable.

The crazy thing is, do you know who I learned this from?

The same guy you think I must not be trying to follow because of my outrage of social injustices at the hands of much of American Christianity.

I’m sorry but I missed the part in your holy book where Jesus was super passive when it came to the oppression caused by the religious elite of his day.

I mean, I could be reading the red letters wrong, but damn I think Jesus called the oppressors out in a rather broad and public manner.  To be honest, from the sound of it, he was pretty pissed with their actions and ideology.

I mean here is just a taste of J publically going off on the religious elite,  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you ought to have practiced without neglecting the others. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel…

 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which on the outside look beautiful, but inside they are full of the bones of the dead and of all kinds of filth. So you also on the outside look righteous to others, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”

Seriously, does it sound like Jesus was playing the middle ground here? I mean feel free to check out Mathew 23 in the good book if you want to get the full picture of Jesus throwing some serious shade.

The thing is, peace requires action, it requires us to follow the real life red letters and stand up against the hurt while sacrificially loving whoever the other is. As Martin Luther King Jr said, peace means we must stand in the tension, exposing the oppression so the façade of ignorance crumbles beneath and we are forced to either stand with the vulnerable and fight for love or stay silent as we are part of the oppression.

Sheri RosendahlComment