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Have you ever considered all the ways to greet someone? I just greeted you with “welcome.” But there are several greetings, including hi, hello, hey, good morning, good afternoon and good evening. Of course you can also lose the “good” and just say morning, afternoon or evening. Do you want to be less formal? Then try: what’s up (or sup), yo, hiya, ahoy, or howdy. Tired of English? You can use foreign language greetings like: hola, bonjour or neehow.
All of this, and we have not used one of the most common greetings of the early Christians, “peace,” or “grace and peace.” Paul used these terms as the greeting at the beginning and end of many of his letters. The greeting of “peace” was probably carried over from the Jewish tradition. They often used the Hebrew word for peace, shalom.
So if I greeted you with “peace” instead of “hello,” would you think me an old hippie? I hope not.
When you greet someone with the word peace, you want them to experience well-being and the absence of conflict and war. It is also wishing for them peace with God. For followers of Jesus, it is the desire of his Spirit to produce these things in our lives.
The word can also be a way to say goodbye. And that’s what I hope for you — Peace!
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.