Day 6: “Shalom on Earth”
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom He is pleased!” -Luke 2:14
God is glorified as nothing-broken-nothing-missing peace is manifested on earth, but the only way such peace is possible is if humanity chooses to glorify God instead of themselves. This puts the human race in a predicament because our self-glory-seeking hearts are incapable of producing what is required for Shalom. The chaos of sin is what has resulted in our bodies, minds, families, and communities. In fact, creation itself was corrupted. (Romans 8:21-22) The chaos goes DNA deep and every human being is born into a state where they can’t glorify God or produce Shalom in and of themselves. Humanity actually produces the opposite. “No one seeks God…” “Their throats are open graves” bent on death and chaos, and “Destruction and misery always follow them. They don’t know where to find peace and have no fear of God at all” (Romans 3:16–18). It doesn’t take a lot to convince us that this is true and that we are pretty far from “peace on earth” in and of ourselves. Thankfully we have a God who keeps His promises, a God who said He would make a way for Shalom to happen and for us to flourish the way He designed us to. He does that through Jesus.
When Jesus was born, a new DNA strand entered humanity, one that didn’t have the corruption of sin in it. Jesus was a second Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45-49), another chance for us to get it right and give glory to our Creator and manifest Shalom on earth as He intended. “And the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son” (John 1:14). The angels spoke of glory and Shalom on earth as Jesus was born, proclaiming the favor of God toward humanity. Their proclamation manifested as the boy grew and struggled in this chaotic world, just like us, but was without sin (Hebrews 4:15). Everything He did displayed Shalom and glorified God. Even His death on the cross was an act of obedience for the sake of peace and reconciliation between God and humanity. In our union with Him, our hearts are made new (2 Corinthians 5:17) and these once- sinful vessels, bent on corruption and chaos, now have Shalom living on the inside that is bursting forth as we repent and live lives of faith and obedience through the indwelling Christ in us, our hope of Glory (Colossians 1:27).
1. Pray the enemy would be silenced and God’s people would work together to bring peace and reconciliation in your community no matter what color, culture or class they are a part of. Pray for unified diversity.
2. Ask God to bring His people in your community together to pray, love and serve their neighbors. Write out specific ways you want to see that happen. Pray that God would receive great glory as His people sow seeds of peace into the lives of their neighbors and love them with the love of Christ.
3. What are seeds of peace do you need to be sowing into your community? Write them out and ask God for the strength to not just talk about doing it, but actually showing up and doing it!