In 2003, I was in Santa Barbara, California and saw a gathering at the courthouse. People were carrying signs in protest to something. I had to learn more, so I parked my car and walked into the garden area behind the historic building. I pitched my easel on the grass to paint this scene in plein air. It seemed that I had stepped into stepped into a time warp 45 years back to the past. Baby Boomers being chauffeured by their grown babies were being dropped off at the curb. In the Sunken Gardens of the courthouse, Graying hippies were calling the community to activism under the thread-bear banner of an encircled, inverted broken cross aka: peace sign.
A ‘Vietnam Vet for Peace’ protestor kicked the gospel gate wide open for me when he declared, “George Bush can’t be a Christian!” When I realized that he was waiting anxiously for my reaction, I just shrugged my shoulders and responded, “Who am I to judge his salvation.” He went on to say that a real Christian would not start wars, but make peace. The scriptures state, ‘If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men’ (Romans 12:18). As we have seen in the news recently, it appears that it was no longer possible for the citizens of certain nations to live under the rule of tyrants and dictators.
The Prince of Peace
Jesus is The Prince of Peace. However, His mission is not to bring peace to the nations of the world at this time, but to the hearts of individuals. There will certainly come a day when Jesus will return to rule the nations. There will be world peace at that time, but not before then. Until then, you must ask yourself, “Is there a war raging inside of me?” It seldom sounds like it is good to surrender during a time of war, but God’s kingdom is contrary to the kingdoms of this world. You can have true and eternal peace in your heart by surrendering to The Prince of Peace, Jesus. Do it now.