Saturday, February 18, 2012

Peace... A Child's Perspective

This week we hear about kid's take on peace.  WHAT IS PEACE?

...being happy with it
...when you feel relaxed and everything is good
...peace and quiet worry free
...when you are satisfied with your doings
...a time of rest
...knowing that you have nothing to fear
...when it's calm and quiet and everyone is nice to each other picking flowers and fruit

I once heard a story about an art contest where artists were asked to paint what peace looked like.  Several canvases captured scenes of morning sunrises.  One was of a green pasture with a horse standing under a tree with a few lazy cattle on the hillside behind.  Another painted a quiet meadow, filled with an array of wild flowers and distant purple mountains.  A babbling brook running over soft, mossy rocks was another artist's interpretation of peace.  A couple of paintings of beautiful churches were also submitted.  But the picture that won was unusual.  The artist had painted a rugged mountain side being battered by a storm.  Rain slapped the rocks as strong winds howled against the trees.  The elements showed no mercy as lightning flashed in the background.  But nestled into a crevice of a rock on this tall mountain side, was a bird, safe and sound.  As the turmoil of the storm raged around, this small creature sat in complete protection and peace.  This was the painting that won the contest for this artist grasped the concept of peace.

It isn't the absence of the storm that gives us peace, but the cleft in which we nestle ourselves.  The old hymn Rock of Ages is still one of my favorite songs.                                     Rock of Ages, cleft for me
                               Let me hide myself in thee...

"Here my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For you have been my refuge, a strong tower..."     Psalm 61:1-3

"You will keep in perfect peace, him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.  Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal. "    Isaiah 26:3-4

Safety is not found in the absence of danger, but in the presence of the Lord.                    Amen to that!

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