Sunday, 19 August 2012
I've considered myself to be non-violent for a few years now and through it all, I've learned a lot through my pacifism. Whenever you make a huge lifestyle change, theology change, job change, etc... there is a learning curve. The first days away at college, or first time driving a car are always the times where you learn the most about living without your parents or having so much control and freedom, respectively. Pacifism isn't any different, and I want to share you a few of the things I have learned since becoming a Christian Pacifist.
1.) Learned to Love. I've learned I need to love everyone and how to do that in a messed up human kind of way. Christians are called to love every rapist, murderer, church-goer, Mormon, liar, thief, good person out there. Not only are we called to love bad people and good people equally, but unconditionally. Being non-violent has freed my to love everyone.
2.) God is working. I have learned to trust the invisible hand of the market, err... God is working in everything. It wasn't until I became non-violent that I truly understood this. God's grace covers everyone, even people who do evil. I can't take control of that redeeming love. I need to leave it in God's hands
3.) Love transforms. With all my heart I believe the best way to see someone change for the better is to love them. It was God's love for us that has allowed us salvation. As couples get older, they start to look alike. Love literally transforms them. :) I believe that God's love can transform even the most egregious of sinners. Even Nickelback. (Burn).
4.) God is just. In everything God does, He is just. In the end, his justice will prevail. God's vengeance is his judgement. I don't want to have any part of God's vengeance. I am just a simple human, I make mistakes. It would be a huge mistake if anyone pretended to know for certain the will of the Father.
5.) The history of Pacifism. The church has a history full of pacifism. From the early church, to the present day peace churches. Non-violence has always been present in Christianity. It is cool to look throughout the history of the church and think about all the people who have struggled with the same questions.
I grew up being really excited about war, chaos, and turmoil. I definitely didn't delight in it, but when NATO bombed the crap out of Yugoslavia, I was excited. I didn't live in the 60's or any of the decades before, where war happened. I grew up in a peaceful time. War excited me. Even the war in Iraq excited me. Maybe it's just a maturity thing, but war now breaks my heart. Violence, death, chaos... It all breaks my heart. Violence isn't in God's plan.
This is only just a few things I've learned. I'm sure I've learned more, and will continue to learn more. What has God taught you through a lifestyle change?