Last year I was at Vancouver International airport, waiting for a flight to London. I took time to enjoy a coffee and looked across to see a gigantic fish tank. The colours were exquisite, as were the variety of fish, starfish and anemone. It was such a serene picture, these graceful creatures just floating in the artificial current. No hurry, no antagonism. Ample room for everyone to go about their life. I don’t know about you, but I think that looks pretty idyllic!
Many times in history we’ve heard of countries or people groups in conflict with each other, with one or both suggesting they are on a mission from God. But when God’s Son, Jesus, came to live among us He said we are to live in peace with each other. His message to Christians was for us to show others how it should be done. This is what He said:
“To you who a ready for the truth, I say this: Love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst.” Luke 6:27-30 The Message
This means we turn the other cheek when someone has wronged us. It means we don’t retaliate because this only leads to an escalation of conflict.
Jesus could have taken control of the situation when He was being taken for His execution. But instead He submitted to it, even saying “Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing.” Grace and peace were Jesus’ characteristics and the words the Apostle Paul used to begin each of his letters in the New Testament.
That’s a good reminder for us to seek lives of serenity . . . just like these fish!