We define PEACE usually with the idea that peace is a condition in which we are free from something we don’t want: war, disturbances, unrest, insecurity, and noise. Jesus understood peace differently. For him, peace meant the Hebrew word shalom. Shalom was (and is still today) a greeting of hello or goodbye that offered to another a desire for their health and security. But this desire is rooted in a desire for wholeness and completeness for ourselves, others, and our world. Jesus understood peace as compassionate hope and work for everything that brings healing, reconciliation, justice, and unity. Peace isn’t the absence of disturbance as much as the presence of the good, the healthy, and the whole.
Not surprisingly, when we see peace as Jesus understood it, peace isn’t so much something we wait for but something we actively make. We are called to be peacemakers not just people who think peace is a good idea. Peace is something we do and create as we bring healing and wholeness into our lives and the world around us.