Why be a peacemaker?

A woman greeting a man with a handshake.

Has anyone said or done something unkind to you today? Perhaps at work or at school someone was rude, making some insulting or demeaning remark. Or, while you were shopping, a person may have crowded in ahead of you in line. Similar things may occur in one’s own family. One member may speak slightly or disrespectfully of another. Or they may be rude or unkind in some other way.  How do you react when these things occur?"

Is it wise to retaliate?

Football coach arguing with referee on the pitch

Is there not an immediate inclination to retaliate? But have you found that this really helps?

The fact is, many relationships have deteriorated and broken up because of retaliation. An opposite course is much wiser.

For consider: When tired or irritated, have you not said or done unkind things to persons you love?

We all have. And have we not wished later that we could retract what was said or done?

But if retaliation to the unkindness follows, does not a cycle often start? Yes, unkindness quickly follows unkindness and hostilities grow.

Some persons may feel that they should repay injury with injury to keep others from taking advantage of them. But, time and again, experience has shown how unwise this is.

Feuds can result. Sometimes these have lasted so long that the participants do not even recall how the strife began.

Even whole nations and peoples have become involved in this cycle of rendering injury for injury.

How can it be stopped? What is the best way to react to unkind remarks or acts?

Go the extra mile to be a peace maker

Two lady friends with earrings with peace symbol.

When the neighbor’s dog drank her baby’s milk, the woman demanded compensation. But her neighbor became enraged and a knife fight resulted.

The two women cut each other severely—all just because of the loss of a little milk.

This is typical of what can happen when people blow a small thing completely out of proportion.

Often this leads to far greater loss to those concerned than if the original demand had been granted or withdrawn peacefully.

You may know people who are bent on getting every personal advantage regardless of the expenditure of time and money. They make issues over trifles and insist that they must be vindicated.

Would it be wise to get involved with them in lengthy and costly legal battles? Often it is better to take a loss and thus avoid getting embroiled in a maze of legal problems.

As far as an official or a supervisor is concerned, he or she may have the authority to request the performance of a particular service.

Instead of protesting, the individual asked to do something usually is farther ahead by being willing to do what is required of him or her. Thus avoid needlessly reprimand from those in authority.

Now, in the case of the two women mentioned above likely neither one of them would have been scarred for life had there been a willingness to make compensation or to take a small loss.

This is well illustrated in what happened to two women attending a public function.

One of them accidentally knocked over a bottle of milk that the other woman had bought to feed to her baby.

She quickly cleaned everything up and, when the other woman returned to her seat, offered to pay for the spilled milk.

But the other woman had no interest in compensation and the two women soon were engaged in pleasant conversation.

Conclusion

Truly, the person who gains is the one who avoids making issues over trifles and really goes beyond what is asked of him or her to settle matters peaceably.

There is real wisdom in being willing to walk that extra mile to be a peace maker.

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