It doesn’t matter which country you visit, there’s conflict—conflict based on race, religion, ethnicity. Hey, in some places, they even have riots over which football team you support.
What’s the matter with us?
Part of the answer is that, wherever you go, there’s history—between ethnic groups, people of different skin colors, different religious groups, political parties, competing tribes—all struggling for supremacy.
And even after the struggle is apparently over, there’s inevitably a seething unrest bubbling away below the surface. I’ve travelled to a lot of countries, and I can tell you, it’s true everywhere I go.
Now—you and I—we can’t solve the world’s geopolitical conflicts or even the tensions in our own countries. But I wonder is there something we can do to bring about peace in our neck of the woods?
1 Peter 3:8 says: “So all of you should live together in peace. Try to understand each other. Love each other like brothers and sisters. Be kind and humble.”
Those words were written to a bunch of Christians who, in first century AD, were undergoing terrible torture and persecution. And God’s advice here through Peter the Apostle wasn’t to stand up for your rights. It wasn’t to fight back. It wasn’t to take over and win the argument.
God’s wisdom was to try to live together in peace.
How? By understanding each other. Understanding is always the first step towards peace, because it de-escalates the conflict. By loving each other like family. Sure, families argue, but love prevails. By being kind and humble. Kindness is one of the most underrated forces for good on the planet. Humility is a quality that we all admire, but very few aspire to.
Listen up. You can bring peace to your home, your neighborhood, your workplace . . . through understanding, love, kindness, and humility.
*Life Application Questions*
What do you think it means to “live together in peace?”
Our human instinct is so often to fight back when someone wrongs us and to shout down the people who disagree with us. But what kind of response is God calling us to?
Read through Peter’s direction and encouragement in 1 Peter 3 again. Allow the words to sink into your heart. How can you bring peace in your own home, family, and community?
Spend some time in prayer. Ask God to grow more of His peace, kindness, and understanding in your heart—especially as you engage with people you might disagree with.