Shalom-maker {a hillside sermon}


Blessings on the shalom-makers. {Jesus}

Over and again, Jesus passed this blessing: Peace to you. In our church, like most round the world, we pass these same words one to another each Sunday. It’s good to spy out a lonely soul or someone who’s heavy with care – grab their hand, look them in the eye and remind them that peace is theirs, right then, right there.

Of course, peace is a word with heritage. Shalom was the older Jewish greeting; but the two words mean the same thing: Wholeness. Well-being. Renewal. To speak shalom is to announce grace everywhere, on everyone. A shalom-maker is one who insists on goodness. They insist. Shalom-makers aren’t pining for a utopian dream. They see the world as it is, all shot to hell. No delusion. They see the ruin, but they insist on goodness all the same.

And Jesus says a blessing on the shalom-maker. God knows they need it. Shalom-makers need this word of joy, spending so much time as they do soaking in grim places. Left alone, that darkness will crush a soul. Sadly, shalom-makers are no strangers to aloneness. Shalom-makers eventually tick everybody off because they don’t stick to one side. They aren’t beholden to a party line. They’re committed to shalom, not ideology. They refuse the temptation to create scapegoats and release the vitriol that feels so righteous in the moment but always de-humanizes the one in its crosshairs. They’re about goodness, and if you want goodness only for yourself … well, then a shalom-maker is going to be a royal pain in your tush.

There’s another reason (among hundreds) these weary but hopeful souls need a blessing. Notice they’re shalom-makers, not shalom-guilters. A true person of shalom rolls up their sleeves and digs into the hard work of love. They invite others to their work, but they don’t bludgeon others to their cause. That’s not shalom; that’s manipulation. And it’s a difficult thing to be gentle among wolves. Blessings on them.

3 Replies to “Shalom-maker {a hillside sermon}”

  1. Love this, Winn! Not taking sides, not forcing or manipulating – how like Jesus!! I want to spread Shalom!!!

  2. Definitely loving this series. I sure am missing the passing and receiving of those words together with you and All Souls…

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