“Seek the peace and prosperity (shalom) of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” – Jeremiah 29:7
I have a tattoo on my arm (much to the chagrin of my dear mother) with the word ‘shalom’ written in both in English and Hebrew. The colours used: red, yellow, black and white represent all people of all nations. The words are written on an ancient scroll with a fish, which symbolizes Jesus, bursting out of it. It says that ‘peace’ has a name, and His name is Jesus.
The word ‘shalom’, or peace, is my single-word mission statement. I sign off most of my emails with the word ‘peace’, occasionally kicking it up a notch and signing off with ‘shalom’. I’ve come to think of the definition of the word shalom as ‘the condition of the world in which The Creator originally intended it to be’. So my life’s mission is to seek ‘shalom’ wherever I have influence. The world is not at peace. There is so much turmoil and conflict; just turn on the TV for just 5 minutes and you’ll see. American (and yes, Canadian) politics. War. Pain. Suffering. Homelessness. Addiction. Global warming. The list goes on and on. We need shalom.
May we continue to seek shalom in our work as we keep striving to be “The Hand of God in the Heart of the City”.
Dion Oxford, Director of Mission Integration
Prayer of St. Francis
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.