"Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth." Mt 10:34
Peace at any price is not usually peace at all, and peace without justice is empty. Jesus and the church are pretty clear about these two notions. When we seek or think we have peace and have not addressed the terrible inequalities that people suffer, we are hardly living the gospel.
Jesus is clear about this when the rich young man wants to know what he must to do to be perfect.
"One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess and distribute it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when he had heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich. And Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!" Lk 18: 22-24Clearly, it is not wealth itself that gets in the way of living the gospel life, but the clinging to it for the sake of security that blinds us to those most in need.The peace that Jesus promises his disciples and us comes when we are interiorly free, when we trust God as the ultimate good. It is shortsighted to live as if happiness is something we can earn or deserve. We have only to suffer one deep heartache to know how shallow material wealth and possessions can be.
Mary, the mother of Jesus, becomes our model in all of this. As she said "yes" to God when the angel asked her to be the mother of Jesus, and "yes" over and over again throughout her life, she reminds us to say "yes" today to all that is, and to trust that God has a plan for each and all of us.
Today, enjoy time with a friend, and do not count the cost.
What do you think Jesus means when he says that he did not come bring peace upon the earth?