By: Bethany Apelquist
Reflection—v. 79, ‘To guide our feet in the way of peace’
At Mercy, we often sing the old spiritual, ‘Guide my Feet,’ a song that asks God to guide us
while we run the race—a race for justice and peace. In the song, one of the verses says,
‘Hold my hand,’ and another says, ‘I’m your child.’ Both verses paint an intimate relationship between God and those running the race. I wonder if there is something to be said about being close to God and being a peacemaker. Over the last year, I have been confronted with the reality of violence in our world. While working at a hospital this summer, I saw the ways in which violence can destroy lives, families, and communities. My response to seeing this violence has been a frantic, desperate search for how I can be a peacemaker. I don’t think my impulse is wrong, but rather, incomplete. Zechariah ends his prophecy imploring God to guide the feet of his community in the way of peace, an image that involves both God and community in the work. The season of Advent is one in which we wait with anticipation for God to move. I wonder what it would look like if instead of frantically running in circles trying to single-handedly fix problems, we looked to Jesus as our guide and co-worker in bringing peace. My prayer this Advent is that we walk hand in hand with Jesus toward a more peaceful way of being in the world.
Prayer: God of Peace, accompany us on our journey this Advent, showing us the ways of
peace, and bring us closer to each other along the way.