I don’t like to get political. Especially with my weird conservative yet liberal leanings. I’m a mixed bag when it comes to politics. And so I don’t like discussing it. Even more so on this blog. But when I look at the world stage and what’s been going on in a country called Syria, I cry inside. I weep for a country torn apart. I remember watching the news back in the ’90’s about Bosnia-Herzegovina. I remember watching NATO bomb parts of Serbia because of wars going on then. And my heart broke.
And my heart breaks again for Syria. A country that was once a hotbed of Christianity now torn apart by war between multiple factions. So what should we do? Pray for peace.
Pope Francis has been vocal about praying for peace on Twitter. On September 4 he tweeted “Let the cry for peace ring out in all the world!
#prayforpeace” Let the cry for peace ring out.
Jesus says something interesting in Matthew (well, he says a lot of somethings interesting in that Gospel). He says
“Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9
Later in Matthew, when Jesus spoke of the times to come he said to his disciples and followers
“You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom…All these things are the beginning of birth pains.” Matthew 24:6-8
War is real. War is happening. These are the signs of the times. Now, I’m not saying that the world is going to end. No. It is but the birthing pains. Sin has racked wreckage upon this world. Sin has corrupted this world. And this whole world is in birthing pains, waiting for Jesus to come again to bring complete peace.
What do we do when we pray for peace? We pray “Come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20) and Jesus responds to this prayer saying “Yes, I am coming soon.” (Revelation 22:20). He is coming soon. And until then, we pray for peace.
But there is more to that. We are to live out Jesus’ coming. Live it out as if it is today. Live it out as if it is now. Live it out as what it will look like when he comes. We are to live this peace and be peace makers. We are to seek God.
The Psalmist writes
“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you in a dry and parched land.” Psalm 63:1
Not only that, but we are to seek God’s justice in our prayer for peace. We are to seek God’s justice in living out Jesus’ coming again.
“For, I the Lord, love Justice” Isaiah 61:8
“The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.” Psalm 103:6
“But let those who boast boast about this: That they understand and know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight” Jeremiah 9:24 TNIV
In times of pain and struggle that are happening in this world. We are to seek peace and justice. We are to pray for peace. We are to pray “Come, Lord Jesus, come and heal this dry and weary land.” We thirst for Jesus during turbulent times. We thirst for his peace and justice.
And so, pray for Syria. Pray for God’s peace to lay upon the land. Pray for justice to be done well. To tell the truth, we as a nation are a war weary people. And we want something more than just the point of a sword (no matter how big it is, it’s still a sword–bombs or not).
There will come a time when plowshares are beaten into swords and pruning hooks turned to spears. But that time is not yet here. Now is a time for a call for peace.
So pray for Syria. Pray for a dry and weary war torn land. Pray for the people. Pray for peace.
For blessed are the peacemakers. Blessed are those who pray for peace. Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly.