The Shalom Rock

The gift of a rock commemorated successful completion of my life purpose coaching certification. Along this path of new beginnings, my mentor and friend, Katie, had lovingly coached me with positive encouragement and high expectations. As I packed to leave the Life Purpose Coaching Centers International home base in Colorado, Katie shared a story about a special trip she had made to Africa. On the journey, she had been blessed with the Shalom rock, and was now passing it on to me.

As she handed me the rock, I received the love that was part of the package. Running the palm of my hand across the beautifully inked calligraphy on the smooth faced white stone, I touched its message of peace while feeling less than peaceful about adding its weight to my carry-on bag.

Pride in my identity as a ‘light packer’ rose up unexpectedly. I faced my less desirable self, wrestling between a self-awarded lifetime achievement of “savvy traveler” and a genuine appreciation for the thoughtful gift. How could I let an offering of peace be a burden?

While considering the extra weight, I knew my hesitation to receive the gift might feel like rejection to my friend. The importance of Katie’s kind offering of ‘Shalom’ grasped my heart and quickly won out. As counterintuitive as it seemed to add a two-pound rock to my bag, I placed it beneath my carefully rolled clothes.

Recalling many stones of remembrance I had acquired over the years, I comforted myself. The memory marker would be worth this small inconvenience. After all, markers are an important part of our story.

In the Bible, we find many scenarios where stones were set as a memorial to the Lord, commemorating His goodness for future generations.

From the beginning, in Genesis 28:10-22, Jacob marked the spot in Bethel as a reminder of the vision God gave him there. Jacob wanted to remember what God had given him. Bethel, or ‘House of God’, became an important place of worship. The lasting stone marker represented the remembrance of God’s faithfulness for all who worshipped there forever.

Little did I know, in carrying the rock home to West Virginia, Daddy God would give me a marker of experience and deeper understanding of the full nature of Shalom. Saying a final farewell to Katie, I quickly found friends on the shuttle to DIA and focused forward toward home. As usual, I was set on enjoying every step of the adventure of getting there.

Over an hour later, at the airport, I scanned my boarding pass to find the ‘TSA pre-approved’ check I expect on every trip. Score! It’s a small thrill for this savvy traveler not to be required to stop and remove my shoes with long lines of weary others. Passing through the security check easily, I looked back to the conveyer, scanning the area to spot my bag. In a moment I located it and wondered why it had been set aside.

I waved my hand high, awkwardly offering my best law-abiding smile to the airport security lady.  

“It’s okay! That’s my bag!” 

I felt silly as the words came out of my mouth. Was I expecting my personal assurance and claim of ownership to change anything for this complete stranger?

The guard was clearly focused on her security work. A hand acknowledged me, giving the signal to wait. Instantly, I felt guilty. Is it possible to be criminal and not know it?

Embarrassment tinged my cheeks as I awkwardly tried to find a comfortable posture, shifting my feet like a child in the ‘time out’ corner. 

The guard’s slightly curved lip hinted at amusement as she approached me.

“Look.” She raised both eyebrows as she held the Shalom rock and pointed to the snapshot of its image from the screening machine. Immediately, I understood.

“Dear Lord, it looks like a bomb.” 

My sweet Shalom rock clearly resembled an explosive device in my bag coming through airport security. That rock. I closed my eyes and shook my head. Fumbling with apologies, attempting to explain the gift and feeling not at all ‘savvy’, I kissed my TSA pre-approval goodbye forever.

I mouthed a silent, “God bless you,” as I headed toward the gates. 

She grinned back at me, and said, “Shalom to you.” 

What a witness! I am reminded God can speak to us in whatever way He chooses. This particular gift of peace came packaged in a covering of grace to take me from pride to humility. The gift became richer as it was unwrapped. The power of peace must not be underestimated, and may be best experienced in small, unexpected ways.

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” ~ Acts 1:8 NKJV. (emphasis added).

In the Acts passage, power is “dunamis“, signifying power in action. The Greek root word of our English word, dynamite, is the explosive power of the Holy Spirit descending on those waiting in the Upper Room on the day of Pentecost.

The dynamite power of the Holy Spirit continues in us who believe. It is the power we carry within, and the power we celebrate as we remember the time of Pentecost. Adding power to peace is the nature of the Shalom as indicated by the biblical Hebrew expression.

Understanding this biblical ‘Shalom’ includes an understanding of the fullness of peace within a child of God. Are we brimming over to the excess, spilling out our peace onto others? When we are completely peaceful, we will truly bubble over with peace

Jesus, the Son of God, added peacemakers to a blessed, son-ship position along with Himself. The power of pure peace pouring onto others from within us makes us more like Him.

Explosive peace is the power of Shalom.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” ~ Matthew 5:9 NKJV.

During this time of expectant waiting for Pentecost, let us carry this full Shalom nature of God and let it bubble up and explode from us for His Kingdom glory.

With love & belief, Jill

14 thoughts on “The Shalom Rock

  1. Darla Colombo says:

    Thank you Jill. The Lord has been speaking to me about His peace. I am not finished yet with the poem, and I was wondering if I had heard Him correctly. Your word just confirmed what He has been saying to me! Thank you again! You are a mouthpiece for our Daddy!!

  2. Cheryl says:

    What a beautiful gift your mentor gave you and God blessed it with a beautiful (I could say dynamite) message! Thanks for the post! I recently was thinking how I have missed Godsip!

  3. Christa Stevens says:

    What an awesome witness! I must say, I chuckled a bit while reading your experience in the airport! LOL But what a mighty reminder that the peace of God is active! A verse that immediately came to mind, Isaiah 26:3.
    “Thou will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee…bc he trusts in Thee.” Thank you Jill! I always look forward to your posts!

  4. Jill says:

    Thanks,Christa! It was one of those moments you look around and give thanks no one there knows you! God is so good and I am thankful to be welcomed back so graciously. Blessings and love to you.

  5. Jill says:

    Cheryl, Thank you. That means a lot! I could go on with explanations (both reasons and excuses) for where I’ve been the past year, but I decided to just jump back in. Love and blessings to you. Your encouragement is greatly appreciated!

  6. Jill says:

    God bless you, Darla! I’ve struggled to blog over the past year and I understand that being pulled back and made low is a good thing, even when it’s hard. You are a huge encouragement to me as you so consistently speak the truth in love. Love and blessings to you. SHALOM!

  7. Jill says:

    Pam, Your constant encouragement over most of our lifetime always gives me the feeling I’ve been hugged, no matter the distance. Love you. Thank you for your unwavering support and true friendship, for life! I’m trying to get back into the routine of consistently posting.

  8. Donna Waybright says:

    Jill, Oh how I love this writing. It speaks deep into my soul. I too have such peace in these days and feel the presence of the Holy Spirit profoundly. Shalom my friend. Also, I had to giggle a bit about your experience at the airport. Good to see Godsip back. Love!

  9. Jill says:

    Donna, Thank you for your love and encouraging comments. There is so much happening in the spirit, I am trying to just do the thing I hear the Father saying, one word at a time. LOVE you. SHALOM!

  10. Charity Jacob says:

    So glad to hear from you again! Shalom….”my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth…” Praise the Lord, let us bless Him, trust Him, and glorify Him even more during these times of trouble in the world!

  11. Jill says:

    Charity! Thank you for being such a great inspiration and strong encourager! You truly have blessed me through the desert time and I am thankful to be crossing over. BLESSINGS pour over you!

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