Sometimes my head hurts with the clamor of the world around me. Social media is full of arguing–people are angry and opinionated and sure that everyone else is wrong. Families divide over differences, refusing to see how each generation has unique gifts to offer. Churches debate the Bible and get ugly over what should be a lovely, connecting part of their lives–the desire to understand Scripture and our God revealed therein.
My head also hurts with the clamor inside my own mind. Some Bible passages that I have studied and re-studied still don’t make sense to me. Relationships that I care about refuse to be fixed, and I don’t know what is wrong. And parenting has me second-guessing myself nearly every step of the way.
All this noise, outside of me and inside of me, is so exhausting.
Last Sunday, surrounded by the gentle glow of stained glass windows, my heart stilled. In the holy quietness, God spoke to me, “The wisdom from above is peaceable.”
That statement comes from a verse in James.
But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.
James 3:17 (ESV)
The thought was so simple and clarifying for me. Grouchy arguing about politics or church doctrine is not God’s wisdom. The turmoil boiling in my heart and mind at times is not God’s wisdom. Scolding my children is not God’s wisdom. God’s wisdom is peaceable.
God’s wisdom enables His children to explore issues lovingly, mercifully, and reasonably. God’s wisdom comes from a heart that is gentle and pure.
Before I accept the views presented on social media or at church or anywhere else, I need to ask myself, “Is it peaceable?”
Before I let my opinions fly from my lips or from my fingers at a keyboard, I need to ask myself, “Is it peaceable?”
Perhaps it is not so hard after all to discern wisdom that comes from God.
And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.
James 3:18 (ESV)
How can the truth be shared in a merciful and peaceful way?