The true meaning of peace reflects on the importance of the partnership of peace and justice where to livesimply demands that everyone strives for the right relationship with one another.

True peace goes hand in hand with justice. It is not merely the absence of war or the fragile exhaustion that exists in the aftermath of conflict, when lives have been torn apart, relationships broken, infrastructures destroyed and homes demolished. Rather, the God-given peace that our creator desires for us, and to which livesimply calls us, is built on justice, where everything and everyone in the created order is in right relationship with each other and can reach their God-given potential.

If we ignore the inequality that exists between those who have too much and those who have too little, and the mounting tensions that such polarisation brings, we only pay lip service to the pursuit of peace and God’s law of justice is denigrated. Real peace needs to be worked at, like a life-long relationship. It is built by those who direct their efforts to its establishment, day after day. Its pursuit means listening to the voice of the oppressed and being challenged to action. It means seeing all humanity as our brothers and sisters and honouring other people’s development, as well as our own. And it means building a future for the next generations so they can know life in all its fullness and peace in its entirety.

Annabel Shilson-Thomas



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