On a return trip from visiting some of my children and grandchildren, I was waiting to board my plane at Gate 56. The silence was rudely broken by a voice emanating from the loudspeaker, “Pre-boarding announcement: Everyone with small children, all uniformed military personnel, those handicapped or in wheelchairs, please board.”
I had flown numerous times before, but this particular time, something struck me like never before. One of the servicemen with a cast on his leg and foot was on crutches, another was being pushed in a wheelchair, while another had no visible disabilities. They were no doubt on their way home to enjoy the holidays with loved ones. Then my thoughts began to wander to soldiers suffering from PTSD. My mother’s heart went out to them in compassion.
It was shortly before Christmas and I was reminded of a few lines from John Lennon’s song written years before. It begins, “And so this is Christmas and what have you done? Another year over and a new one just begun.” The main point he was driving home was one of peace and to stop all the fighting. Then for the New Year: “Let’s hope it’s a good one, without any fear.”1
The word “war” comes from the Old High German word “werra,” meaning to confuse or to cause confusion. Paul’s first epistle to the Corinthians tells us that “God is not the author of confusion, but of peace.”2 And John writes that “If any man says he loves God, and hates his brother, he is a liar: for he that loves not his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?”3
In approximately BC 760, Isaiah prophesied that in the coming reign of Christ on earth, there will be no more war. “He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.”4
We look forward in the future to a better day where there will be love and laughter and peace ever after. In that day, we’ll be free from war with real peace brought by God and His kingdom forever.