“Peace be with you” John 20:19
This is the greeting Jesus gave to his disciples after his Resurrection. He wanted to reassure them and take away their fear, doubt and confusion. His presence and reassurance astounded them. They still did not understand the message of love he had revealed in so many parables, miracles and his daily example.
Even after giving Himself at the Last Supper, Judas’ betrayal, their abandonment and Peter’s denials; Jesus comes to them offering His Peace. This is another confirmation of God’s unconditional love and acceptance of each of them.
It is the same message He gives to each of us. Do I, do you really accept this unconditional gift of love? When life seems out of control, overwhelming and unbearable how do I/you respond? Do we tend to lock ourselves up, isolate and doubt?
Do we seek out others to share our burden(s) with? Do we demand signs and “proof” of God’s presence like Thomas? Can we accept Jesus’ “Peace be with you”?
Perhaps more challenging still is how I/we respond when we feel hurt, betrayed, abandoned. When life seems unfair, hard or frightening can I accept whatever it is and allow the peace of Christ to fill my heart? Can I learn to respond with Christ’s love and acceptance? This is the way to spread Christ’s Peace to my family and to the larger community. First I must believe and accept that Jesus loves me and gives me His Peace. Then I can share the Easter joy and blessings with others.
“Peace be with you.”
Jan Ginzkey, OSB