That being said, I realize I can’t always control my surroundings, but I surely have a pivotal role to play in how I relate to others when peace becomes elusive. But what happens when peace is lacking in our other family, personal and work relationships? What if it is impossible to keep the peace?
If you want to focus your worship on God, you’ll have to make peace with your fellow man. In Matthew 5:23 Jesus says, “Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” He declared that when you are rightly related to God, you will do things differently from the world’s ways.
Jesus had just taught the famous sermon on the mount to the multitudes that surrounded Him on the hillside, including the beatitude; “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the sons of God.” Why are the peacemakers blessed? Because they are submitted to God – under His mighty hand – useful for the Kingdom. They have rightly rejected their right to their own way. They have peaceably humbled themselves unto God (James 4).
Proverbs 4:23 declares, “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” Psalm 24 says, only “he who has clean hands and a pure heart” can stand in the presence of God.
Preserving peace often entails a sacrifice on your part. Sometimes it means “biting your tongue” and swallowing unpleasant words to keep from spewing them out. We are to impart grace to the hearers (Ephesians 4:29), and season our speech with salt, knowing how to answer those who are curious about our walk with the Lord, thus encouraging dialog in a peaceful manner. Remember, we are still a “work in progress” and in the process of sanctification.