Got Peace?

Got Peace?

This past weekend Wink and I traveled up North to family farm and an event my High School class was hosting…  It happened to turn out that a first cousin, once removed of mine on the Hinkle side of my family, Mary Bowers, had died at the age of 91 years and we were able to go to her funeral that Sunday afternoon…. In Salem, Indiana. (Salem means Peace)

We always enjoyed speaking with Mary and would visit her in her home and later in her Assisted Living Facility when we were close to the area.  She was the last living relative who knew a lot about my Hinkle side of the family, excepting Earl Hinkle Jr. who told me he does not know nearly as much as Mary did.  My Grandmother, Florence Hinkle, was her Aunt.  She was a kind and gracious woman….  We have heard her stories, seen and heard her cry, and we shared what each of us knows about our ancestry….  People who know me know of my concern for Peace, Nonviolence, and Social Justice….  I am particularly fond of telling of my Great Great Grandfather, Alexander Hinkle who was a cabinet maker, (in my possession is a chest he made out of Cherry with hand cut dovetails) as I am…  He was also a conductor on the Underground Railroad, the North Salem route, (there was also a South Salem Route) and he would put up runaway slaves in the home he built himself, in which Mary lived as a child, hauling them to the next Underground Railroad stop in his wagon underneath the stacks of loose hay…  I am particularly proud of his concern for Social Justice, and that of the Quaker community on both sides of Salem in those years….  I am not so proud of my Great Grandfather, Calvin Hinkle, who ran away underage at 16 years old to fight in the Union army….

Both my Great Great Grandfather, Alexander Hinkle, and my Great Grandfather, Calvin Hinkle as well as other relatives are buried at Crown Hill Cemetery in Salem, IN…

You can look them up on the link above, as well as others in the Hinkle and Bowers family….

Now, so is Mary Bowers buried there also…..

I am a Christ Follower and what I believe about Peace is based upon the ethics of Jesus firstly and primarily….  At the funeral I was thinking about the Scripture, about In Him we live and move and have our being….  And, about how the whole world and ALL things, physical and spiritual, was created by and for Him…, meaning Jesus…  I was thinking about how mankind is all, everyone, created in God’s image…

I was thinking about how we are created to function as God designed us, of the Genesis account of creation in functional, not literal scientific terms, and how God desired to rest in His temple on the 7th day, and from a New Covenant perspective how we who believe in Him believe He has come to rest in us also and indwell us….  Also, how He, if one believes that Jesus is God, asks us to come to Him, and He will give us rest….

I won’t bore you with all the Old and New Testament references to support this position and bog this down right now… If you want to know, Let’s talk….

All of the ideas above would take a book to explain, and years to explore, eternity, actually…..

One thing though, when we die, we are at rest, we are at Peace…..  Got that?  Got Peace? Want Peace?

I believe we can get Peace while we are alive also….  Mary had Peace with God while she was alive, and definitely has it now….  There is nothing she can do to fight anymore against flesh and blood, there is nothing people who are flesh and blood can do to fight against her….  She is not at war… She is at Peace…, whatever you may believe, even if you are an atheist….

Mary talked a lot about Jesus… She expressed to me how she wondered why she lived so long and expressed in the same sentence that she did talk a lot about Jesus…., and share her faith with others…  I talk about Jesus a lot, the Prince of Peace… I have even been rejected by some of my friends, even Christian friends, (essentially disfellowshipped, actually) because of my radical beliefs in the Gospel of Peace it seems to me so few Christians can understand in our Post Christian culture….  It is so sad, to me…  I pray a lot about it…

I firmly believe one can get Peace while still alive…  It seems we all get more of it as we age and attempt to bear fruit that will last into eternity… Not just Christians get it…  I have seen Christians of all persuasions get it, I have seen Jewish people get it, I have seen Muslims get it…. I have seen so called Atheists get it…  I really do not think the Spirit of God can be limited in time and space by one’s religion.  He can enter into and give Peace to anyone He wants to….

The Gospel of Peace proclaims God is no longer at war with mankind..  God offers us Peace…. He has already absorbed all Evil into Himself when He died on the cross…. Good has already defeated Evil… The Myth of Redemptive Violence taught us form birth by the Prince of another Power is defeated…. God has entered into His Temple, His rest, His Peace, and offers us the same, if we will only believe…  He will enter into us…

Mary Bowers Believed…

She Got Peace…

Grace AND Peace,

John Cooper