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The Peace of Christ

  • May 17, 2022 (readings)
  • Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter
  • Janet McLaughlin
  • John 14:27-31

    Jesus said to his disciples: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you,
    ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe. I will no longer speak much with you,
    for the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over me, but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me.”

    Opening Prayer:  My God and Father, I live in a world that is busy and filled with division and conflict. When I hear your promise of peace, I feel a great longing to experience it in my life. I believe that you are faithful and that if you promise something, you will give it. Help me remember, though, that it is your peace, not my idea of peace, that you give. Keep my eyes set on you, my ears open to your words, my heart open to your life within me. I hope in your providence that brings all things together for my good. I love you for your constant love, for your ongoing presence and care in my life.

    Encountering Christ:

    1. Not as the World Gives: Thinking of peace may conjure up the idea of freedom from conflict or worry, but Jesus tells us the peace he gives is something different from worldly peace, and since it is Jesus who gives it, we know that it is something greater. The peace that Jesus is telling his disciples about is a peace that comes from trusting the Father. As he faced his Passion, Jesus instructed, “Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” His example shows us that peace does not depend on everything going right in our lives, but rather it is rooted in trust in the Father’s goodness and his desire for our ultimate happiness. He wants us to experience peace in the midst of the trials of our lives by trusting him with ourselves and all that is dear to us. 

    2. A Fruit through Order: St. Augustine described peace as the “tranquility of order,” and St. Paul teaches, “Let the peace of Christ control your hearts…” (Colossians 3:15). How do we do this? We allow the peace of Christ to be formed within us as one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (CCC 1832; Galatians 5: 22). Again, how? By living the kingly mission to which we are called and through which “lay people have the power to uproot the rule of sin within themselves and in the world, by their self-denial and holiness of life (CCC 943; cf. Lumen Gentium 36). As we grow in union with Christ and conform ourselves to the will of the Father, we find order in our relationships with God and others and within ourselves. In that order, “the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard [our] hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). Where in our life do we need order in order to experience greater peace?

    3. I Am Going to the Father: What might it have been like to be a disciple and hear Jesus say, “If you loved me you would rejoice that I am going to the Father…” We might be incredulous and wonder how we could possibly rejoice in his leaving us? We might think about all we had experienced with him and learned from him and wonder, “What will we do without you?” Yet Christ’s leaving them allowed him to be present throughout history, all the way to this very day. His leaving is what allows him to be present to each of us through the gift of the Holy Spirit in our lives. A little later in this Gospel, Jesus said, “But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you” (John 16:7). Christ ascended into heaven so that he could send his Holy Spirit, and it is through the Holy Spirit that Christ is alive to us right now. 

    Conversing with Christ: Jesus, I believe that you want me to live with confidence in you and your plan for my life. I believe that you want me to live in interior peace as well as in peace with those around me. Lord, help me see the things that rob me of my peace. Do I spend too much time on social media or watching the news? Do I take on too much of a sense of responsibility for things that belong to another’s free will? Do I really trust your love for my loved ones who have strayed? Lord, help me grow in the virtue of hope, and so trust you for all that I need to reach eternal life with you.

    Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will pray the Litany of Peace below and ask for the grace to see those situations in which I am most likely to lose my peace. As I notice these times occurring throughout the day, I will pray, “Deliver me, Lord Jesus; grant me your peace.”

    For Further Reflection: Read the section of the Catechism entitled “The Joint Mission of the Son and the Spirit” (689-690).

    “The Litany of Peace” by Fr. Matthew Guckin (Ascension Press, https://ascensionpress.com/pages/litany-of-peace)

    Litany of Peace

    From the desire to control ... Deliver me, Lord Jesus

    From the desire to give my opinion ... Deliver me, Lord Jesus

    From the desire to project myself as the victim ... 

    From the desire to impress others ...

    From the desire to please everyone ...

    From the tendency to complain ...

    From all my irrational fears ...

    From all violent speech ...

    From failing to accept uncertainty ...

    From comparing myself to others ...

    From not accepting my limitations ... 

    From an unhealthy desire for perfection ...

    From an unhealthy attachment to others ...

    From excessive self-blame ...

    From holding on to grudges ...

    From holding on to the past ...

    From wanting more than I need ...

    From the impulse to justify myself ...

    From worrying about the future ...

    From thinking only about myself ... 

    From losing perspective on life ... 

    From not being able to laugh at myself ... 

    From not being able to forgive myself ...

    From overanalyzing the intentions of others ... 

    From the desire to change others ...

    From thoughts that this world is all there is ...

    From failing to trust in God ...

    From failing to see God in all things ...

    Peace Prayer by Fr. Matthew Guckin:
    God of peace, calm me and heal me. 

    Let your peace reign in my heart at this very moment and for all eternity. 

    We make our prayer in the Name of Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace. Amen. 


    © 2019-Present. EPRIEST, Inc. All rights reserved.

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