Letting Go and Holding On

Peace Makers“The peace-makers- those who are themselves of a peaceable temper, and endeavor to promote peace in others: who study to be quiet, and, as much as in them lieth, to live peaceably with all men: who are so far from sowing the seeds of discord between any of their fellow creatures, that they both studiously avoid contention themselves, and labour to extinguish it wherever it prevails, laying themselves out to heal the differences of brethren and neighbors, to reconcile contending parties, and to restore peace wherever it is broken, as well as to preserve it where it is…” Excerpt from Benson Commentary on Matthew 5:9

My pastor started a series this past Sunday called Blessed are the Peacemakers.

As he was preaching, I felt a mixture of both excitement and a sort of impending doom, HA. My flesh knows what’s coming.

It’s like finally sitting down in the long-awaited seat of a roller coaster, but the kind that’s like, WAY too high up. All of a sudden you’re buckled in; someone gives a tug on the bar to make sure you’re secure. You’re then thrust forward, slowly inching your way up to the terrifying top. Click, click…click, goes the notches, and there’s no turning back now. You’re not sure what’s really about to happen- you could have a ton of screaming fun, you could be petrified silent (that’s usually me), you could spew your lunch on all of the spectators, your phone could slip out of your pocket and go hurling towards the ground (that’s my brother, hehe), or worst case scenario, the ride could fail to remain intact and you could be flung into oblivion (I actually knew someone that that happened to, which is why you’ll never catch me on the Gravitron ever again). Either way, you’re fastened in tight, so the only thing left to do is to let go and hold on.

The conflict of letting go and holding on; to let go of your illusion of any control and to hold on to the one Who’s got the whole universe spinning in His will.

If I’m going to get through the hard things as a Christ follower, I HAVE to surrender. It’s my failings to do so that gets me stuck. And even my stuck-ness is in His grasp. I don’t hear something until I’m meant to hear it. Concepts doing turn into beliefs until the Holy Spirit reveals it to my heart. I can’t start to really live those beliefs out until I am sold on them, and even then, there’s a constant need to surrender so that walking away doesn’t become more attractive.

That description up there, the one about the peace-maker… I want to be that person. However, the amount of relenting required for that to become my reality… it just feels scary. The temptation to believe that God isn’t who He says he is; the lure to believe He indeed will fail me, leaving me to be flung into oblivion, is so strong a lot of the time. Even though He’s proven himself time and time again, I’m still so frustratingly bent. The rocks cry out, and so do I.

Dale talked about the importance of peace to God, and it got me thinking.

The measures God took to bridge the much deserved divide between Himself and I, it’s hard to fathom. To take a piece of Himself, the part He calls His Son, and allow His broken flesh and spilled blood to be the extension that reconciles me to Him and makes available a peace that transcends any kind of human mastery…

In light of that truth, I think I want peace to be important to me.

Blessed are the peace-makers, for they will be called children of God.