Shalom: God’s Design for Peace, Part 4: Pursuing the Prototype // Kate Murphy

God is steadfastly restoring all of creation to the holy state of shalom—repairing all that was broken and distorted in the Garden of Eden. And when we put our faith in Jesus, God invites us to join him in that work.   When Jesus called his first disciples to follow him, they had to leave their previous work as fishermen behind. But why? Why couldn’t Simon, Andrew, and the sons of Zebedee “fish for people” and fish for actual fish? Are we, too, sometimes called to choose between earning a pay check and participating in God’s work of bringing shalom? Listen as we encounter the gospel of Mark and ponder how to work for shalom while we work for a living.

Shalom: God’s Design for Peace, Part 3: Peace Subverting Power // Kate Murphy

What if you could live in a place where you were safe and had everything you needed to be well? What ifin that place, it wasn’t just you but everyone who had what they needed to thrive? What if it wasn’t just people, but every living creature and all of nature living together without danger, threat, or lack of any kind? That state of balance and bliss we’re imagining? It has an ancient name: Shalom. And we may be just beginning to imagine shalom, but it is the birthright of all creation. Moreover, because Almighty God is determined to restore shalom to his creation, shalom is inevitable. We who know the Lord are invited, even now, to live in shalom and to join God in creating and restoring it.

This Sunday, we’ll read an ancient letter from a teacher named Paul to a man, Philemon, who was caught in the evil anti-shalom system of slavery. Listen in to hear how Paul invited Philemon (who was not a slave, but a slave owner) to take the whole institution down, all by himself.

Shalom: God’s Design for Peace, Part 2: Peace Without Preference // Kate Murphy

This Sunday, we’re digging into the book of Amos to see how God’s commitment to Shalom is fierce and unwavering. He is not satisfied with a broken and brutal world—he is resolute that his people will live in a society where covenant is not only worshiped, but lived.

Shalom: God’s Design for Peace, Part 1: A Song That Has Been Sung Since the Beginning // Kate Murphy

“The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lay down with the goat…they will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” —Isaiah 11:6-9
For us, that’s not just a line of beautiful poetry. It’s not a metaphor either. It’s a vision of Shalom—which is so much more than our shallow concept of peace. The world as it is—glorious and beautiful and transcendent as it sometimes may be—is only a broken shadow of what God created reality to be. As Christians, sometimes our vision for who God is and how God calls us to live is too small. We pray and labor for what seems possible. But God’s plan is so much more than our most daring hopes.