– Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter –
“[M]y peace I give to you” [John 14:27]
Today’s passage is taken from Jesus’ farewell discourse. Jesus tells his disciples that he is giving them his peace; a peace unlike what the world is offering them. This peace is therefore not merely an absence of war, strife, or worry, but is the peace which, according to Philippians 4:7, “surpasses all understanding.” In other words, it is a peace which can’t be disturbed; it is a peace that cannot be lost even in the midst of war, strife, or worry! (see John 16:33).
While Jesus promises the gift of his peace, it is worth considering what is he asking of us in return. According to the prophet Isaiah, it is to trust him:
Those of steadfast mind you keep in peace—
in peace because they trust in you.
Trust in the Lord forever,
for in the Lord God
you have an everlasting rock. [Isaiah 26:3-4]
According to this passage, the gift of the peace of God depends on our willingness to place our lives wholly in his hands: “Those of steadfast mind you keep in peace … because they trust in you.” St Teresa of Kolkata knew, more than most, about the peace that results from trusting God. She had this to say:
“If [God] puts you in the street, if everything is taken from you and suddenly you find yourself in the street … accept to be in the street at that moment. … To accept all the people that come, all the work you happen to do, to have today maybe a good meal and tomorrow maybe you have nothing; there is no water in the pump, alright – to accept. And to give whatever he takes: he takes your good name; he takes your health, yes, that’s the surrender. You are free then.”
Let us continue cultivating our trust in God and make ourselves ready to accept the more difficult elements of his Providence. In doing so, we will come closer to the peace and freedom which Jesus promised us.
by Mark Makowiecki