Thursday, August 29, 2013

An Army of Peace

Situations like the one the world encounters today are frustratingly tragic. A nation, Syria, is killing it's own people, many of them without animosity towards anyone, and killing them with torturous, dangerous, insidious chemicals. Clearly we can't stand by and let this happen, but we're also wary, especially as Christians who are marked by radical non-violence, of interfering in the traditional way.

It is easy to justify violence in defense of the defenseless. There's not even any shame in it. At the same time, it falls short of the Christlike (Christ-ian) model. I won't belabor the point; I've said it frequently and lengthy enough.

It is absolutely awe inspiring to see the sacrifice of relationship, time, often mental and physical health to which many commit as part of a military, where they have the protection of a firearm and, more largely, the largest arsenal in the history of the world. That is true and established.

What would it take to send an army into such places of frustrating turmoil armed only with the world-changing power of love? It would likely mean a lot more death, a lot more sacrifice. Perhaps more than we could ever expect of anyone. I'm hesitant even to mention it, especially as one with a spouse and a child. I have a hard time believing I could do it. There are those who do. The army of peace is quite small, yet it is likely the most powerful force on the face of the Earth.

There are never just two options. There is always another way. It may not be easier, it may not even be (or seem) possible. But it exists. Whatever we do. Whatever our choices, our perspectives, we must remember there is another way. To deny it is to deny hope.

Lord, have mercy.

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