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 family, personal and work relationships? How is it possible to keep the peace then?
We have a dire responsibility –a holy charge if you will – to be at peace with all men, but especially in the Lord’s house. This charge conveys the urgency of nothing being left undone on our part, in order to preserve that 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).
Peace and holiness go hand in hand. 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.
In the book of Romans, Paul addresses the believers in Rome concerning their Christian duty to God, to themselves, and to their fellow man. After teaching on the believer’s position in Christ, he exhorts them to live a transformed life, thus bringing glory to God. Beginning in Chapter 12, verse 1, Paul pleads with them to lay down their lives on the altar, as it were, for the sake of Christ. By giving over their own bodies as sacrifices, they would relinquish any right to their own destiny or desires. Their offering is purely voluntary, and thus, honoring to God.