Do you want a lifetime of good times? Then don’t speak evil or treacherous words! Turn away from evil and do what is good! Seek peace and pursue it! Psalm 34:12–15
“Accidental peace,” if not exactly an oxymoron, is such an incongruous pairing that Scripture never suggests its existence. Instead, peace occurs as we intentionally align ourselves with God’s intent to provide us what is good; and as we pursue that good with all our hearts. So we consistently encounter recommendations and reminders that peace is not a product of perversion. In particular, peace is not a product of perverse speech. Evil and treacherous speech does not occur by accident. It flows out of a broken heart, a heart convinced it alone can shape its environment for good by manipulating everyone else; it creates a world of disintegrated relationships by undermining confidence in God, in others and even in ourselves. When we are treacherous, we speak one way and act another; so we ourselves are disintegrated; and such treachery disintegrates our relationships with others. Without relational integrity the good life of peace cannot exist, even for a little while. So how do we pursue peace? “We walk with integrity, act righteously, and speak truth in our hearts. We do not slander anyone, or do evil to a neighbor. We honor those who fear God, and we keep our promises regardless of how much it costs us.” God requires this for peace and rewards this with peace.
O Lord, grant me fidelity to your commands so there will be a river of well-being in my life.