Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Inquirat pacem | Seek peace

Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it. —1 Peter 3:11 (NLT)

My dear brothers and sisters,

We often face various difficulties, such as being humiliated, cursed, or even being target of crime. Our honor and reputation are often protected by the speed and sharpness of our tongues to answer those insults.  

Apostle Peter however rejected the practice of insulting each other. He carried the slogan "When reviled, do not retaliate, but bless!"

Peter's advice given to people is not only when life is comfortable and safe, but especially when they are under pressure.  

As a minority group without protection from the authorities, Peter’s congregation had no chance of winning in cursing contests or black campaigns.  So, ignoring insults and replying with kindness is a wiser way.

Brothers and sisters, doing good, working for peace, and blessing even those who do evil are Christ's attitudes. These attitudes, which also inspired Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., became a powerful force towards transforming the lives of their people.

The teaching of not repaying evil is not just a beautiful ethic, but is based on God's strength and goodness. When we repay evil with goodness, we surrender to the goodness of God who listens to our pleas for help.  

Even though life is full of injustice, we can hope in the strength and justice of God who will repay those who do evil. Trusting solely in God's justice and goodness is not easy, especially when facing pressures from the environment and local communities.  

Nonetheless, God always provide us help and strength. Having fellow believers near us is part of the goodness that God provides in dealing with the difficult times we experience in our lives. Amen.

Reflection on 1 Peter 3:8-12 by Fr. Risco Batbual, SVD

(Listen to the Podcast here)

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