Make Me a Channel of Your Peace
“And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.”
2 Corinthians 12:15 (KJV)
In October I attended my annual Church Retreat held in the English Riviera. Eight days were spent praising God, learning more about God and His children all around us. We had an opportunity to sing several hymns but, unless you went to the optional Hymn Sing (an informal evening where one could request one’s favourite song) none were repeated. Yet, God is good, and we still managed to sing many of my favourites along with new ones.
One favourite hymn which stands out and became significant to me was Make Me a Channel of Your Peace; a beautiful hymn based on the prayer of St Francis of Assisi and sung at the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales. I see it as an encouragement to put the need of others before self. The refrain says:
Oh Master, grant that I may never seek,
So much to be consoled as to console,
To be understood, as to understand,
To be loved, as to love with all my soul
At this retreat the opportunity arose to console someone just because I slowed down long enough to hear their pain and share their tears: in doing this a friend was gained.
The retreat is also a time of great fellowship with such a concentration of brethren! It is fun to cram in as much socialising as humanly possible. But not everyone feels that way; some family members still need space: recognising this enabled someone to stay and enjoy much more of the retreat than planned.
Sometimes, when we are hurt we tend to build a protective wall around us, repeated injuries can see us putting up reinforcements! At this retreat, rather than staying in my fortress, I tried letting down the guard around my heart and showing some compassion: in doing this a friendship was regained.
Father, thank You for giving us opportunities to address the needs of others. You are a God of mercy and compassion – help us to remember that always as we deal with others. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Study by Jackee Brown
*You may listen to the hymn here
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