Real. Peace. Even in the Middle East.
Palestinians and Israelis - a panel of both, sat before me, peacefully talking about what God is doing in their land1,2,3. No, your eyes did not deceive you. 'No yelling, cursing, obvious anger or bitterness. We certainly do not hear about this sort of thing on CNN, with Christiane Amanpour4 standing nearby, microphone in hand, do we? The October meeting was riveting from the moment it started until the program ended, a day and half later.
Here's what I know: the struggle over the land will not end, that is clear ... however, there is something bigger at work than the historical bloody tug-of-war over the precious land; that struggle? The desire for inner peace and meaning in life, and finding its solution.
These men have the Solution in common ... Jesus Christ.
Wait ... some are Israeli Jews and they believe in Jesus? Yes, half were Messianic Jews; that is, of Jewish descent, but followers of Jesus. Half were Palestinians or Israeli Arabs--not Muslims, but followers of Jesus Christ. [In the case of Palestinian Christians, it can be very dangerous when found out.]
Their common ground: the gospel of Jesus Christ ~ that is, who he is, what he came to establish, and how he called us to live. The Gospel - accepting it and living it - is not just shalom or salaam for the individual, but the only real solution for global peace as well.
Ah, now we see the critical importance of what the apostle Paul chose to do after coming to personal knowledge of Jesus Christ himself, recorded in Acts chapter nine. Though it was 2000 years ago, his action has direct application for you and me. In "Choose Your Next Step Wisely", (http://pastorwoman.com/ReadArchive.aspx?id=2911), I charged you with the notion that we have the power to choose our steps wisely ... or not.
What was the Gospel message that Paul received when he sought truth? In brief, he captured it with this:
"through this man Jesus there is forgiveness for your sins.
Everyone who believes in him is made right in God's sight."!! Acts 13.39
When Paul met Yeshua, he went from existing to really living.
So can you, Friend. Many folks have made a mental ascent that Jesus is the Son of God, but that's where they stop, and that, Friend, is stopping short. Knowing Jesus means following and obeying his Word, talking with him because you love him. It is so much more than 'yeah, oh sure, I believe in him'.
Walking with Jesus is Life.
What difference does Jesus make? The difference
between just existing and joy-filled living, abundant living!
between wondering and being certain
between isolation and never being alone between darkness after death and eternal light
between a loveless forever and perfect love
between separation from God and eternity with God
Jesus even says of himself, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."5 The darkness would go out and the fighting would stop in the Middle East if living for Jesus was held in common by Arab and Jew. Heck, darkness would go out of our marriages and families if we all lived for Jesus first! Hmmm . . .
1 - Epicenter, 2017 in Costa Mesa, California
5 - John 8.12