peace is a choice (4)

Here's another installment of MCC's "peace is a choice" reflections:

Speak truth...using passion and compassion

There is a lot of "untruth" out there. Advertisers, salespersons, the media--all are guilty of telling untruths at times. And so are ordinary people. To build peace, it is important to speak truth with honesty and integrity. Sometimes, however, in our eagerness to unmask lies, we often use language and a tone of voice that is harsh and judgmental. This can cause others to be defensive and to dig in their heels. When you speak, balance your passion with compassion for the feelings of others.

"It is not how much we are doing but how much love, honesty and faith is put into it" (Mother Teresa)

You would think this idea of "passion and compassion" would be common sense in our diverse culture, yet so often we turn to fear in the face of opposition or alternatives to what we believe is truth. I realize this reflection perhaps oversimplifies the challenging reality of our pluralistic society. I think, however, the word is timely if peace is to indeed become something that inhabits all aspects of life. And missing directly, of course, is the reality that as Christians we don't simply try harder. Rather we seek to live in the ongoing presence of God's Spirit - a life full of "love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" (Gal. 5:22-23)

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