Sermon for Ladock Flower Festival 2018

Flower Festival 2018:  PEACE

INTRODUCTION to the Service

Our Flower Festival this year has wonderfully and thoughtfully highlighted the human condition: as Rowan, the former Archbishop of Canterbury says, we live in a mixed economy where good and evil are intertwined everywhere we look – in our gardens(!), across the continents, in our own lives.  But, like Flanders’ fields of poppies, the flowers here remind us of hope and resurrection; they shout out

Goodness is stronger than evil.
Love is stronger than hate.
Light is stronger than darkness.
Life is stronger than death.
Victory is ours through Him who loved us.

I hope this morning we can continue to reflect in a way that leads to transformation and peace, with thanksgiving.


I wonder how you would define peace ….

If you have any little people in your family, you will probably know this story:  Peace at last

By Jill Murphy ….

I think we all identify with this because we often think of peace as the removal or avoidance of something – noise, difficulties, irritations, conflicts, war.

But that is not the whole story: for true peace is peace during these situations, as well as when the conflicts are solved; it’s something positive, active – more than a nice feeling, and something not so easy to achieve.


We have to work at peace, we have to make it – and thankfully Jesus told us that peace-makers will be blessed.

Peace is not satisfied until there is

Reconciliation – a coming together of the warring parties and putting relationships right

If someone in a family storms out of the house after bitter arguments, there may be a semblance of peace; but true peace only comes about when the family reunites with repentance and forgiveness and living in harmony together once again


Peace is not satisfied until we can forgive and love our enemies

A sign of this is when we can pray for those who slander or persecute us


And peace is not satisfied until we do good to those who hate us

So often someone has to break the cycle and take the initiative in putting things right.


There is a hint of these things in Jill Murphy’s story:  at the end – they are back together;

Mr. Bear accepts Mrs Bear’s cup of tea; he does this graciously without chiding or blaming.


Our Lord Jesus knew all about making peace:  he took the initiative – he came to us;

his outstretched arms on the cross held God in one hand and us in the other, and he drew us together, as he took our blame upon his own shoulders; we can be back in relationship with God again;

he forgave at all times, even from the cross;

he never paid back or took revenge.

This peace passes the test.


Knowing God is on our side, that he is for us and not against us, brings a peace that passes our understanding, to all the situations we may find ourselves in; for we can be confident that He is with us; he will see us through; he will never leave us or forsake us.


This is the peace sans frontiers we are asked to put into practice. 

This is the motivation and strength for faithful peace-makers:  to forgive others as we have been forgiven. 

Perhaps we all need a few more cups of tea – especially with our enemies! – if we are to find Peace at last.  Peace at the last.

May you go in peace today.




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