by Charlene Howard
Pax Christi USA National Council Chair

“The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” ~1 John 3:1b -2

My Sisters and Brothers, I am currently enjoying one of the greatest blessings of my life. I am helping my youngest daughter transition into motherhood for the third time as she adjusts to her newborn. Since she was considered high risk and the circumstances surrounding her pregnancy were not ideal, it was our constant prayer that she and the baby would experience an uneventful gestation and delivery … and God did not disappoint. We now just hold our little one for untold amounts of time staring into her little face, soaking in every expression, coo and movement. We look for minute changes in her temperament, awareness and physical appearance, adoring this bundle of joy in our arms while simultaneously wondering what she will be like. You know the list of questions: Who will she favor? Whose temperament will she mirror? What will her talents be? How will she carry on the family values, characteristics, etc.? What we do know is that all will be revealed in time.

And so it is with us, those who are working to bring about God’s kingdom. We are God’s peacekeeper children and though we have been at this important endeavor for 50 years or more, all has not yet been revealed. We are continuously becoming, evolving and changing to reflect and be the Peace of Christ – a work in progress. This beautiful aspiration is also most challenging to actualize. As we are confronted with the unsolicited invasion of Ukraine; an unabashed morally questionable political process; intentional neglect of municipal water systems in neighborhoods and cities of people who experience economic disenfranchisement due to their color; and a seeming lack of respect for all human life, we become frustrated, angry and worn out by it all. This demands that we do a self-check to ensure that we still see God’s peace at work IN us. We must seek the ways the Holy Spirit is revealing to us to know God’s way forward in response to these issues so that the effective work of peace can be actualized.

It is my prayer that you do the hard work of finding peace within. Allow God to reveal where your understanding, attitude, choices, and ideas need to be more in alignment with God’s authentic truth as you move forward to bring about true peace in the world. Remember — “We do know that when it [God’s true peace] is revealed, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” — and so too, through us, the whole world.

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