I'm not Catholic, but the one thing I really like about Catholic church services is the part when everyone says, "Peace be with you." I just remember having strangers shake my hand and say it, at a time in my life when things were really shaky. And the people who said it to me were so sincere when they said it. They looked into my eyes like they really meant it -- like they really wished peace upon me.
It was really surprising and somehow really reassuring at the same time.
I think peace is one of those cliche things that everyone talks about and nobody really believes in. Peace seems impossible to achieve. Between countries, between government and citizens, between broken families, between races, between people of different opinions, between coworkers in the workplace. No matter where you are, there is always conflict and dispute. People, even when compromising, think firstly about themselves and their own will and desires.
Peace may seem like some errant fantasy. Something ridiculous and impossible. Something that nobody really understands, because it's a concept that cannot be grasped.
Especially during the holidays, we talk about peace and how we wish peace upon others.
We all think that Christmastime is supposed to be a time of peace and happiness and thankfulness. On the whole, however, society sets us up with a double standard. They say, "Be peaceful now," but they also are throwing us images of perfect, happy families. Of finding that one true love. Of everyone being in good spirits, eating the perfect meal, going to the perfect church service; having the perfect kiss by the fire or underneath the falling snow; of everyone getting all the things they want, and finding that [insert product here] really does
make them happy. Who would have guessed!
The point is, while trying to tell us to be happy, often times, commercialism and Christmas time only serves to remind us of all the things that we don't
have. How many of us actually have the perfect family, the perfect love, and all the money they need to spend on extravagant gifts? If you have all that, then you are incredibly blessed, and you're also a very small percentage of the population.
Despite everything I've said, I am still a believer in peace. Maybe peace isn't having everything you want. In fact, I know it's not. Peace isn't unattainable. It's not some great mystery. It's not even having the perfect family, or having that special someone to always make you happy.
I guess peace starts in our hearts. When you look at yourself, your life, and the world. Then look back at yourself.
I guess peace starts when we say, "Maybe I'm fine the way I am."
And, "maybe things will all work out in the end."
Because maybe you are
And maybe things will
be okay, in the end.
So if you're reading this, peace be with you.
And I really mean that.Do you still believe in peace? During this holiday season, in what ways will you try to seek peace?