Constant and Consistent Love
By Tom Mountenay of Independence, MO, USA
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. O, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love; For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life. —St. Francis Prayer
According to communication theory, a person moving toward another person communicates a positive value. It could possibly be curiosity or concern. Conversely, when we move away from a person, we communicate a negative value, possibly disinterest or dislike.
Recently, I have been asking myself, “How am I being with others?” I want to be an instrument for peace, a living sanctuary, for people in need of justice and peace. In my moments of self-examination, I realize satisfaction when I have been attentive, alarm when callous. It dawned on me a few weeks ago, when in conversation with other evangelists, that an instrument of peace exists for a specific purpose.
In my reflections, I asked myself, “Where does an instrument of peace belong?” For me, all good answers take me into uncomfortable places. Places I must go—places where I am to be an instrument of peace and sanctuary.
I always found it amusing when God told Moses (paraphrased), “I have seen the misery of my people. I have heard their cries, and I have felt their suffering. I am going to come down to rescue them.” And then God sends Moses to free the people from pharaoh and to lead them into a land flowing with milk and honey. At last, God sends Jesus (God’s self) down to free all of us.
God always moves in a constant and consistent direction—toward the creation God loves. God is not passive. God is deliberate. God, always on the move, always moving towards us, is communicating love for us. How do we communicate love for one another?
Prayer for Peace
Constant Presence, we need not wonder where you are. You are with us. It is for us to open our hearts to your heart, and share your love and peace.
Spiritual Practice: Time with God
Sit quietly and let your breathing become calm and deep. Ask God’s Spirit to rest on you. See or sense the Spirit anointing you in the form of light, a dove, wind, color, or other images that might come. Ask to become aware of God’s love. Listen to the ways in which God wants to flow from your heart as living water. Give thanks that your name is “beloved,” that our name is Community of Christ.
Today, God, I will be constant and consistent in my witness of love and peace.