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What is peace?

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

- John 14: 27 New Revised Standard Version.

Something to think about

Peace, as is rightly said, is not simply the absence of war. True peace, God’s peace, is about the whole well-being of people, in themselves, their communities and nations.

So in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories it is not simply about no conflict but about a just settlement, in which all peoples living in the land of the Holy One feel safe and secure and are able to flourish alongside one another.

In a rural village in the UK, it is not just about ‘peace and quiet’ but it is about farmers being able to flourish and all people of the community embracing and valuing one another.

In my own inner being, it is about my mind and will not being filled with anxiety and fear about my family, or my own life and calling. It is about my being settled, secure, confident in God’s abiding love and presence, whatever life may throw at me on occasions.

This peace Jesus gives is ‘beyond our understanding’. It flows from his death and resurrection.

Something to do

Is there someone with whom you are in dispute? Take action today to seek to bring peace.

Find out more about our From Violence to Peace work 

Something to pray

God of peace, Jesus promised us his peace. Help us to receive it. Then help us to be peacemakers in our troubled world. Amen.

Pray for justice to be done for all of creation at the Talking Climate Justice Tour.

Today’s contributor is the Rt Rev Paul Butler, who at the time of writing is the Bishop of Durham, he previously served as the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham.