Tag Archives: nonviolence

Labor in love

Stikå Erik Hansson (1823-1897)
Jesus’ Entry into Jerusalem, 1843

Jesus said, ““Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

We labor every day to follow Jesus, to love our enemies, forgive those who hurt us, feed the hungry, stay peaceful in the midst of conflict, seek justice for the abused and rejected.

The Lord’s humble presence, gentle guidance, and abiding love renews us for our daily mission to be like God in compassion, kindness, and mercy.

 

Live in peace

Retable de la Trinité. Musée d’art Hyacinthe Rigaud, Perpignan (1489)

Brothers and sisters, rejoice. Mend your ways, encourage one another, agree with one another, live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you. 2 Corinthians 13:11

To serve the cause of justice, I must be aware of God’s presence and ask God to show me the next right action. I must be grounded in love of my neighbor and ask the Lord to give me the courage to love unconditionally. I must empty myself of self-serving justification and ask the Holy Spirit to fill me with love and peace.

Nonviolent authority

James Tissot (1836-1902)
Jésus tenté dans le désert
gouache over graphite on gray wove paper, between 1886 and 1894
Brooklyn Museum

Then the devil took him up to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in their magnificence, and he said to him, “All these I shall give to you, if you will prostrate yourself and worship me.”
At this, Jesus said to him, “Get away, Satan! It is written: The Lord, your God, shall you worship
and him alone shall you serve.”
Matthew 4:8-10

Here is a glimpse into the nonviolent nature of Jesus. He listens to the devil’s words without judgment, but, with calm authority, refuses to participate in the devil’s campaign for power.

Jesus’ command of the scriptures and knowledge of the nature of God form his responses and become teaching moments — in which, without aggression, he offers the devil the possibility of conversion.

Lord, teach me your Way of nonviolence that I may serve God in love and justice.

Follow the Way

For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement, namely,
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Galatians 5:14

And another said, “I will follow you, Lord,
but first let me say farewell to my family at home.”Luke 9:61

What delays me from following the way of Jesus in welcoming, forgiving, loving,  showing compassion to, and living in peace with my neighbor?

Today I will practice awareness of the presence of the Lord in each moment.

Together

By Phillip Medhurst [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0), from Wikimedia Commons

Let us walk together in our quest for unity, peace, and love.

Let us remember God’s power gives us the authority to eliminate divisiveness, war, and fear.

Let us live in humble awareness of God’s will that we love one another as God loves each of us.

Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits. Mark 6:7

Transfigured

Linda McCray
Transfiguration
acrylic & sand from the River Jordan on floating wood panel

The outward transfiguration of Jesus calls me to an inward transfiguration that leads me to listen more carefully to God’s Word.

Perhaps my most difficult daily challenge is to hear and carry out Jesus’ command to love each member of the human family—my neighbor. To be an authentic follower of Jesus, I must practice forgiveness, reconciliation, compassion, and nonviolence towards all people, not just those who please me.

Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over [Peter, James, and John]; from the cloud came a voice, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” Mark 9:7

Wisdom’s Way

I perceive the resplendence of wisdom when I stay aware of and act on opportunities to love my neighbor, forgive those who have hurt me, take responsibility for my words and actions, give food to the hungry, visit the sick and lonely, seek peaceful resolutions to conflict.

I find wisdom in my own loneliness, in my realization of my need for God’s guidance, comfort, and boundless love as I continue to make mistakes on the Way to perfection.

Resplendent and unfading is wisdom,
and she is readily perceived by those who love her,
and found by those who seek her. Wisdom 6:12

Nonviolence

James Tissot (1836-1902)
Le fils de la vigne
opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, between 1886 and 1894
Brooklyn Museum

Negativity. Pessimism. Put-downs. Sarcasm. Hostility. These are forms of violence that tackle me daily in the news, on the Internet, at the workplace, and sometimes from my own attitudes and behaviors.

My defense against the darkness of violence is to put my thoughts on God’s boundless love and wisdom, and to practice bringing the light of gratitude, kindness, forgiveness, and compassion to every circumstance in which I find myself.

Thank you, Lord, for being with me right now, in this moment. Help me to walk in the light of your love. Show me how to be a nonviolent presence in our troubled world.

Finally, sisters and brothers,
whatever is true, whatever is honorable,
whatever is just, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious,
if there is any excellence
and if there is anything worthy of praise,
think about these things. Phillipians 4:8

Teaching

Chris Cook, b.1962
Men of Galilee
Acrylic on canvas

Love, forgiveness, compassion, nonviolence, prayer, generosity, service to the poor… does my life witness teach others these commands of the Lord?

Today I will remember Jesus is with me and ask for the courage to embody his commands. I will look to others to be my teachers, too, so that I may become more skilled in the ways of the Lord.

Then Jesus approached and said to them, “…[teach] them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18a, 20a

Blessed peace

The Sermon on the Mount - Matthew 5-7 JESUS MAFA. The Sermon on the Mount, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=48284 [retrieved January 29, 2017].

JESUS MAFA. The Sermon on the Mount, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved January 29, 2017].

Now is the time to make peace, forgive those who hurt us, love our enemies.

Now is the time to put nonviolence into practice, to trust love is more powerful than aggression, blame, and division.

Now is the time to bring compassion and mercy to all who are broken, and to all that is broken in our world.

[Jesus taught them,] “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy… Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:7, 9