By Dawn Onley
Peace is precious. And like other precious resources, it needs to be protected. At all costs.
I’m reminded of peace particularly during periods of unrest. When I turn on the TV and see the terror attack that claimed the lives of more than 30 in Brussels, when I read about the attack on an Ivory Coast beach resort, leaving at least 18 dead, when I hear of shootings and violence right here in the states, I become overcome with sadness.
It seems our world has become besieged with tragedy. In the blink of an eye, lives are changed forever and no one ever sees it coming. It use to be so easy. To avoid the bad guys, you simply didn’t go where they were, except that now, they’re everywhere. They could be living right next door, or up the street.
Stress is at an all-time high. At a time when the Christian world comes together to celebrate the resurrection of Christ, we face so much conflict and it can, at times, drown out the hope that this holy week brings. Everything is exacerbated and visceral. Our joys. Our pain. We remember our family and friends who are no longer here with us with greater sadness because watching someone grieve their loved one is raw and it makes us hurt for them and hurt for our losses, too.
Keeping ourselves mentally, physically and emotionally protected has become a never-ending plight. Sadly, we have to be ever vigilant to our surroundings. There are people with bad intent who wouldn’t hesitate for a second to harm us in a multitude of ways.
This is precisely why we need to take a step back, breathe and spend time on the things that truly matter: giving thanks for all of our blessings, giving to those in need, praying for strength for those who suffer, making time to catch up with friends and family, taking in a movie, reading a book, trying out that new recipe, being present with our children. We need to relax, take time off of work if we have it, to meditate and pray for this world. To pray for peace. We need to exercise kindness and love, and never let evil reduce us to the same, or evil wins.
There’s a lot going on in the world. Taking it all in can feel unbearable.
Let’s send out an avalanche of love and light. Let’s get to know one another and work to strengthen our communities. United we stand, divided we fall. Let’s show people we care. Let’s not wait. Let’s tune our minds to the beauty that still exists and let’s make good triumph over evil.
Let’s keep peace, still.