Pope Francis Am I calm in my peace "Do I fall asleep"? 12.05.20
How does the world give peace and how does the Lord give it? Are they different types of peace? Yes. The world gives you "inner peace", we are talking about this, the peace of your life, this living with your heart in peace. It gives you inner peace as your possession, as a thing that is yours and isolates you from others, keeps you in you, it is your acquisition: I have peace. And without realizing it, you close yourself in that peace, it is a peace a little for you, for one; it is a lonely peace, it is a peace that makes you calm, even happy. And in this tranquillity, in this happiness you fall asleep a little; it anesthetizes you and makes you stay with yourself in a certain tranquillity. It's a little selfish: peace for me, closed in on me. This is how the world gives it (see v. 27). It's an expensive peace because you have to constantly change the instruments of peace: when you get excited about one thing, it gives you peace, then it ends and you have to find another. It's expensive because it's temporary and sterile.
The Lord greets his people before leaving and gives then the gift of peace (John 14: 27-31), the peace of the Lord: "I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you" (14: 27). It is not about universal peace, that peace without wars that we all want to be there always, but the peace of the heart, the peace of the soul, the peace that each of us has within us. And the Lord gives it but, emphasises, "not as the world gives " (see 27).
Today is Nurse's Day. I sent a message yesterday. Let us pray today for the nurses, men, women, and young people, who practice this profession, which is more than a profession, it is a vocation, a dedication. May the Lord bless them. In this time of the pandemic they have set an example of heroism and some have given their lives. Let us pray for the nurses.
Instead, the peace that Jesus gives is something else. It's a peace that sets you in motion: it doesn't isolate you, it sets you up, it makes you go to others, it creates communities, it creates communication. That of the world is expensive, Jesus' is free, it is free; it is a gift from the Lord: the peace of the Lord. It's fruitful, it always moves you forward.
An example from the Gospel that makes me think of what world peace is like, is that gentleman who had the barns full and that year's harvest seemed to be bountiful and he thought, "But I'll have to build more barns, other barns to put this in and then I'll be tranquil. It's my peace of mind, with this I can live peacefully." "Fool, says God, tonight you will die" ( Luke 12: 13-21). It is a temporary peace, which does not open the door to the afterlife. Instead the peace of the Lord is open to where he has gone, is open to Heaven, is open to Paradise. It is a fruitful peace that opens oneself up and also brings others with you to Paradise.
I think it will help us to think a little: what is my peace, where do I find peace? In things, in well-being, in travel – but now, today we cannot travel – in possessions, in so many things, or do I find peace as a gift of the Lord? Do I have to pay for peace or do I receive it for free from the Lord? What is my peace? When I miss something, do I get angry? This is not the Peace of the Lord. This is one of the tests. Am I calm in my peace, "Do I fall asleep"? It's not the Lord's. Am I at peace and want to communicate it to others and accomplish something? That is the peace of the Lord! Even in bad, difficult times, does that peace remain in me? It's the Lord's. And the peace of the Lord is fruitful also for me because it is full of hope, that is, it looks toward Heaven.
Yesterday. Excuse me if I say about these things, but these are things about my life that do me good. Yesterday I received a letter from a priest, a good priest, and he told me that I speak little of Heaven, that I should speak more. And he's right, he's right. That is why today I wanted to emphasize this: that peace, the one that Jesus gives us, is a peace for now and for the future. It is to start living in Heaven, with the fruitfulness of Heaven. It's not anaesthesia. The other, yes: you anaesthetize yourself with the things of the world and when the dose of this anaesthesia ends you take another and another and another. This is a definitive, fruitful and contagious peace. It is not narcissistic, because it always looks to the Lord. The other one looks at you, it's a little narcissistic.
May the Lord give us this peace full of hope, which makes us fruitful, makes us communicative with others, that creates community and that always looks to the definitive peace of Heaven.