Author: Holly Reimer
Reflection: v. 15, ‘the peace of Christ must control your hearts’
It can be so easy to get caught up in the chaos of this world—particularly right now. More and more we are worried about our safety, security, health, livelihood, and sense of interconnectedness. We are left feeling uncertain about the future—will I get sick, will we be able to pay our bills, where will we live, will I ever get housing, will my child be the next to die, will I survive the night, does anyone care about me? These questions and their uncertainty can be unnerving, unsettling, and down right scary. Yet when we allow these things to rule our hearts it can lead us to make decisions that are detrimental to ourselves or to other people, creating disunity, violence and destruction. It traps us into a scarcity model that creates a stampede, trampling anyone who gets in the way of our own survival. On a basic level, it is like the toilet paper shortage we experienced early on in the pandemic—some people collected more toilet paper than they would need in a year, while others wondered if they had enough to make it through the week, when in reality, there was plenty for everyone to have enough. It becomes more about ‘me’ to the point that we forget we even have neighbors. I believe this is a part of Paul’s message and warning to the church community. Paul is imploring us to allow Christ to control our thoughts and actions, rather than fear, anger, uncertainty, isolation, or jealousy. Paul re-centers us, reminding us that we have been called into one body. We are responsible for one another, and there is always room at the table when Christ is at the center.
Prayer Lord, may we be driven by your peace rather than the chaos of the world. Amen.