“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God”
1 Peter 3:8
“Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another . . .” Peter speaks to everyone who reads this letter. He tells those chosen by God to live at peace with one another.
“ . . . be sympathetic, love as brothers. . .” Peter advises us to treat each other as you would a beloved family member. Also, the Golden Rule states that we should treat others as we wish to be treated if we were in their place. My favorite passage for this rule starts our ‘. . . so in everything. . . ‘
“. . . be compassionate and humble.” Compassion means that we take on the suffering of a friend as if it were our own. Paul writes in 1Corinthians 12:26 that if one part of the body of Christ hurts then the other parts hurt. If our neighbor hurts, then we hurt also. We are not supposed to think of ourselves any better than those who live around us.
“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult.’’ As followers of Christ, we are to be the bigger person when we are confronted by another. We should not respond to any verbal attack or we will be guilty of stooping to the other person’s level.
“. . . but with blessing, because to this, you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.”
Our response to insult and rudeness should be to not respond in kind. We should look for the path that Jesus wants us to travel. Because we are human, sometimes we fail at being a peacemaker. Our human nature stands in our way of being Christ-like. Jesus Christ is the best peacemaker. If we ask, He takes our fears and our temptations from us and deals with them on our behalf.
“Whoever would love life and see good days. . .” God’s children appreciate all He has given them and they experience good times. Yes, there can be good come out of bad. We gain strength from climbing up the mountain and out of the valleys.
“. . . must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech.” We have to be careful what we say. Also, we have to be sure our lips will not put our witness in doubt. I come from a background where people viewed minced oaths on the same plane as blue language. Do you remember the children’s song, “Oh Be Careful Little Feet”? It teaches children that we all have to be on guard where we plant our feet, focus our eyes, and say with our mouth.
“He must turn from evil and do good. . .” One who has a relationship with the Lord needs to break away from evil behavior, turn his thoughts 180* in the opposite direction and aim his walk toward goodness.
“. . . He must seek peace and pursue it.” A person who loves the Lord finds ways to search for quiet times in which to spend time with God. That person works at maintaining serenity in his or her surroundings.