Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Psalms 35:19-20 -- On Learning the Language of Peace

"Let not them that are mine enemies wrongfully rejoice over me: neither let them wink with the eye that hate me without a cause.
For they speak not peace: but they devise deceitful matters against them that are quiet in the land."
Psalms 35:19-20

When I read this today, the "they speak not peace" struck me as a foreign language problem rather than a "saying mean things" choice.  ... And, you know, maybe it's both.  This verse is from a chapter where David is very preoccupied with what his enemies think about him and asking God to not let them talk about him behind his back so much.

We're not kings like David was, and we (hopefully) don't have as big of a problem with people talking bad about us, but I think we can all relate to what David is feeling here.  It's frustrating to be mocked, especially when people don't know the whole story or seem to not have a reason.

Learning to speak the language of peace is something that we all need to learn... when we are tempted to mock others, imagining ourselves in their place sometimes sparks some empathy and might help us keep our mouths shut and avoid later embarrassment.  But even when we're on the other side, and we are the one *being* mocked, we can work on learning the language of peace, and remember that we've all been on both sides.  Treating people with kindness, respect, and love when they don't offer the same to us isn't easy... at all.  But it's the only way to stop the reciprocal mockery and dehumanization once it has begun.  Otherwise we just spiral towards a place where we treat each other like inhuman slimebuckets, and we have also become the same.

Today, let's work on learning, and living, the language of Peace, and translating for others when needed. :)

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