Shalom (part 1)

19 08 2005

Bullets, lots of them, whizzing overhead. Sounds of anguish and horror as men, women, boys and girls have their bodies ripped apart by exploding scrapnel, both glass and metal. Tender flesh mangled and burnt beyond all human recognition. War.

Where did this happen? You pick the place: Iraq, Afghanistan, London, New York, Paducah, KY; Columbine.

Violence is all around the world, but most of you reading this post don’t worry about bomb blasts or gunshots on a daily basis. We don’t even worry about those things on a monthly or even yearly basis. But do we have real peace?

It has been said that the Hebrew term for peace, shalom, does not mean the absense of conflict, but the presence of justice and wholeness. We all know that simply taking away the weapons will not solve the problem in Irag, Afghanistan, or Inner City Detroit. The violence is nothing more than a mere symptom of a deeper, more fundamental dis-ease. The dis-ease is not a mystery. You don’t have to be a seer to figure out what the real problem is. It is very clear: too many people do not have enough to eat and drink, do not have dignity, and do not have authentic community, where they are loved and accepted for who they are.

Further, shalom cannot exist when you still have a church that is racially and ethnically divided as it is here in the U.S. Sure, we probably don’t have to worry about a race war anytime soon, but can we really say that black and white Christians actually get along with one another?

There is more though, I learned from my friend Jimmy, who used to coordinate the Pilgrimage for Reconciliation for InterVarsity, that they had to remove the word “shalom” from the title of the program (it was to be called the, “Shalom Pilgrimmage for Reconciliation”). Since the program was intended to be international in scope, they did not want to needlessly upset Arab and Muslim sensibilities. So think of the irony, Shalom itself does not engender peace and wholeness, but division.

So is it possible to have real Shalom in this life, I don’t know. However, I do know that we are called by the Prince of Shalom to be shalom makers.

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6 responses

20 08 2005
Anthony Smith

marc,

i am glad you found the blog. its been an interesting journey here to this particular conversation. i would love to hear about your journey here. email me.

postmodernegro@gmail.com

shalom,

ant

20 08 2005
Ruby-Rose

Hey there, really nice blog you got! I’ve bookmarked you already.
I’ve got a pet accessory site/blog. It has pet accessory related stuff.

Come check out my site if you like.

20 08 2005
cowboy99

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

20 08 2005
Pawel Reszka

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

21 08 2005
Marc Davidson

“marc,

i am glad you found the blog. its been an interesting journey here to this particular conversation. i would love to hear about your journey here. email me.

postmodernegro@gmail.com

shalom,

ant”

Hi Ant,

Thanks for stopping by the blog. I will email with a longer story about how I got here soon.

7 09 2005
Lisa Sharon Harper

Hey Marc! Great blog, my friend! I just started a blog too – Peace Prayers. Here’s the address: http://www.peaceprayers.blogspot.com. Check it out and let me know what you think.

By the way, how are you doing lately? How’re Kim and the girls?

Blessings, brother! I look forward to hearing from you when you get the chance.

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