For the last week I have tried to keep my ears and my heart open as people have spoken about the word peace in my hearing. It is not that I was asking them to define the term for me. Instead, it was a matter of different people talking about their concern for peace from different points of view. Some of the voices and opinions about peace came to me by way of the news media. Some of the voices came from the world of entertainment. Others came from people with whom I was in conversation who were talking with me about the word peace.
Here are some of the opinions and points of view about peace that came to me just this week. There was a story in The New York Times about a doctor from the Central African Republic who left his country to study medicine in France. After several decades as a physician and researcher, the article said “he decided to leave the peace and security of his life in France in order to bring much-needed medical care to the people of his homeland.” In this case, peace was a physical location and an economic position that guaranteed happiness and security. Is that what the angels meant when they spoke of “peace on earth”?