How We Feel Safe …

The other day I was watching this probing video with Mark Braverman, Jewish activist and author of Fatal Embrace.

Right around 7:25, I was struck by his comments about how for centuries, the only way many Jews could feel safe from Christian persecution was by isolating themselves behind walls – cultural, social, and physical. I never considered how the wall in Israel today could be an expression of that deep-seated instinct: “We aren’t safe unless we’re protected by a wall.” To the degree that’s true, it’s an example of how Palestinians suffer today from the indirect results of Christian anti-Semitism in the past, and the cycle of injustice and violence continues to spin.
That in turn led me to wonder what deep-seated safety instinct Americans like me live by. Maybe “We’re not safe unless we’re in control,” or “We’re not safe unless we’re at war,” or “We’re not safe unless we’re defeating somebody.” Worth thinking about, don’t you think?
That in turn leads me to ask about the way of Jesus … who wept because the people of his day did not know what makes for peace. Do we? What, in Christ, is the way of peace, to peace?
Wherever and however you worship today, please pray for peace – for Jerusalem, for Gaza, for Bethlehem, for all Sudanese, for Eastern Congo, for Afghanistan, for Iraq, even in this deeply divided country, for all. And pray that all of us can become not merely wishers for peace, but workers of peace … makers of peace … men and women of peace.
These words from the Prime Minister of Norway provide additional matter for reflection (Press CC for English subtitles):

Notice especially 4:20-5:00. How do we fight hate? With more hate? How do we fight violence? With more violence? Or is there another way, a better way, to feel safe?