Time to come out of the closet: I’m a CSI fan. (only the original of course…) Last time a scene struck me and stuck with me. A cop was talking about his wayward daughter. He’d been watching her on a street corner, drugged up, plying her trade as a prostitute. But he said all he could really see was the five-year old, her tongue sticking from the corner of her mouth with the effort of drawing a picture, sitting there colouring, absorbed, humming a bright tuneless song.
‘Let your peace come back to you’ – I like that phrase from the gospel – ‘if the house deserves it, let your peace descend on it; if it does not, let your peace come back to you’… Let your peace come back to you.
Am I that in control of my peace? Can I call it and recall it at will? I realise that much of the time I squander my peace, make it hostage to other’s fortunes, or watch it wander aimlessly away to leave me unquiet or bored or sad.
What would it be like to husband my peace? To cultivate it? To let it come back to me? I’m not talking about selfish, lazy contentment but the honest kind of consolation God made us for in the first place. A deep peace in knowing what I am and what I am made for. The kind of peace that gives us a choice. A peace I can spend or waste.
Take Hosea. He’s given us yet another in a string of metaphors for sinfulness: today, with Israel, we are fractious toddlers or maybe stroppy teenagers—whatever. But he’s also given us yet another image of God’s steadfast love: a devoted mother, a doting new father. A God to hold us. A God to name us and call us. A God to guide our tottering first steps. A God to lift us up, just to place his cheek to ours. A God to gaze on us with love.
Where is my peace? So often that boils down to asking where my attention is going. Where am I looking? Into the centre of my own fractious, stroppy, wayward self, or into the eyes of the God who sees me so differently? Sees the five-year old at her colouring. Sees the innocence. Sees the potential and possibility for beautiful things… Even now.