A man who had been having problems with an unreasonable neighbor finally had to defend himself legally against unwarranted and dishonest actions. He commented, “I have tried to follow Romans 12:18, but in a case like this I thank the Lord for the ‘escape clause’ He put in this text. It does not say that we have to live peaceably with all men under every circumstance —for even the Lord recognizes that with some people this is not possible.”

Unfortunately, too many people do not do all that is possible to live peaceably. This reminds me of a story about a boy who asked his dad, “How do wars begin?” The father replied, “Well, World War I began because Germany invaded Belgium.” At this point his wife interrupted, “Tell the boy the truth. It began because somebody was murdered.” The husband quickly retorted, “Are you answering the question or am I?” The wife stormed out of the room and slammed the door as hard as she could. When the room stopped vibrating, an uneasy silence followed. The son then said, “Daddy, you don’t need to tell me how wars begin. Now I know!”

Are you quick to retaliate, or have you cultivated a peaceable spirit? Jesus prayed for His enemies. Do you? Today, do all you possibly can to live peaceably. —Henry G. Bosch (ODB Editor 1956-1981)