Leading up to the Special Council on Human Sexuality in April, the Reformed Church in America has published a series of 21 devotionals to help the denomination and participants prepare. We encourage all Room for All supporters to sign up to receive these devotionals via email and follow along as we pray for the church and particularly those LGBTQ people who are participating.
In addition, Room for All has commissioned a series of 21 Inclusive Prayers and Devotionals written by supporters and friends of Room for All to coincide with and complement the RCA’s series. We will publish those here on OUTsights over the next 21 days.
These readings and prayers are solely the words and opinions of each guest writer and do not necessarily reflect the views of Room for All, their staff, or the board.
A devotional by Valerie Van Kooten
‘I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.’ John 16:33
In a day and age filled with terrorism, war, and disease in our world—not to mention strife in our families, congregations, and denominations—the word “peace” seems to be a bit trite. But when you look at the Hebrew word for peace, “Shalom,” you find more than just an easing of external circumstances. Shalom encompasses wholeness, wellness, completeness of body, mind, and soul. Jesus never promised trouble-free lives; in fact, he promised that we’d have trouble in this world. What he does promise is that the peace he gives fills a place in us the world cannot fill. His peace promises shalom for those who feel left out, undervalued, rejected, and despised. He promises wholeness and completeness within us through his death and resurrection—despite what the world sees on the outside. We have peace with God through Him, and no one can take that away. Circumstances on the outside will shift. The peace of God—the shalom of Jesus Christ—will permeate us no matter the situation.
Prayer: O God of Shalom, spread your peace on all who are partaking in this process. Complete us, fill us, make us whole in You. Amen.