So when it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were …, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” John 20:19
This is a time when we understand closed doors. That day of Jesus’ resurrection the disciples were afraid, and they, too, were feeling isolation as they hid behind closed doors. We can share their fear of being harmed. We, too, fear loss and harm outside our doors.
On that day, Jesus appeared in their room and brought words that calmed them; the same words that can calm us today: “Peace be with you.” In Hebrew, the word used for peace is shalom – a greeting that means to be in harmony with God, creation, and your relationships. Shalom encompasses your whole being – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
In the early Church, deacons were the doorkeepers as the community gathered. There would be passwords and signs given to assure that persons who entered into Christian assemblies were not there to bring persecution or harm. Today, we cannot gather as we have before. To keep ourselves from harm, we practice social distancing, we wear face masks to protect others and ourselves, and most of us are isolated behind closed doors. Now, more than ever, we need to remind ourselves that Christ is able to overcome the barriers and doors that we shut ourselves behind. He still enters our lives as he did on that evening with His disciples: “Shalom — Peace, I am with You”. In days of fear, his word to us is “I am with you. I am present, I bring Shalom for your lives.”
Prayer: Go with those words, knowing no matter what happens, your Lord is at your side and brings you Peace. For all eternity. Shalom.
Deaconess Brenda Bauer, Moorhead, MN