Laying Down My Gun

The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

Now it shall come to pass in the latter days
That the mountain of the Lord’s house
Shall be established on the top of the mountains,
And shall be exalted above the hills;
And all nations shall flow to it.
Many people shall come and say,
“Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
To the house of the God of Jacob;
He will teach us His ways,
And we shall walk in His paths.”
For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
And the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between the nations,
And rebuke many people;
They shall beat their swords into plowshares,
And their spears into pruning hooks;
Nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
Neither shall they learn war anymore.

I feel like I’m always in fight mode. I’m ready to attack, to get my own, ready to war for what I believe is owed me. I want what I believe is rightfully mine, and I’ll do what I think it takes to get it. My sword is always at the ready when I feel I am wronged.anger1

How much anger did I hold onto for months? How ready was I to attack if I ever saw the faces of they who wronged me? I allowed myself to succumb to my anger, and everything I thought or did stemmed from that anger for a while. And isn’t it always like this? Don’t I always find myself blaming and accusing others for the hurt and the loss?

But here. Here in these verses, I read of something greater than my anger and my sword. I read of forgiveness and of peace.

The forgiveness in these verses is twofold. The first is God’s willingness to forgive the people, His willingness to take them back after every betrayal and teach them His ways. The second is the forgiveness of the people towards one another by walking in His path and laying down their weapons.

When I hold onto grace and mercy and forgiveness instead of anger, I forget war. I will not “learn war anymore”. And isn’t that a better way to live? Filled with peace rather than wrath? Have I not found that since choosing to forgive I have felt more peace than any day in the preceding months?

Stop holding onto your anger. Stop your self-pity and blaming. Start turning your weapons into tools for edification. Instead of warring and tearing down, forgive and build and grow.

Just as Christ has forgiven you for your betrayals, forgive others theirs.

You are worth more than what the anger makes you. And you deserve to be happy without memories of anger to mar it.

“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.” -Colossians 3:15

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