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A Life of Shalom

A Life of Shalom

Welcome in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. At the time of writing this article I sit in Tonga Regional Headquarters reflecting on the past weekend when Julie and I, and the Tonga regional officers, travelled to Vava’u Corps Plant to celebrate their 10-year anniversary with them.

There were over a hundred people who gathered for this celebration, and we thank God for the years of ministry on this island. During this time seven junior soldiers and five senior soldiers were sworn in, as well as a number of people making first-time decisions to follow Jesus.

This month’s SALT theme is about peace, which in the Hebrew language is ‘shalom’. The deeper meaning of shalom is to be safe, sound, healthy, complete, whole and in harmony; it’s a state of calm without anxiety or stress. It signifies a sense of wellbeing and harmony both within and without. Shalom also includes the idea of vigour and vitality in all dimensions of life. In short, shalom speaks of holistic (holy) health for our souls and spirit.

In the Bible, shalom means universal flourishing, wholeness and delight. It’s the way things ought to be, however so often they are not. We know that on many levels this universal flourishing has not been this way, but it’s a message we need to hear and experience in a much greater way personally and in our nations.

In John 10:10 in the Bible, Jesus said, ‘The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full’.

This verse is a key verse for us as The Salvation Army Te Ope Whakaora which is translated as ‘the Army that brings life’. It’s the vision that all may experience life in all its fullness—to flourish, to experience shalom.

It’s a vision that together we live out the good news of Jesus Christ so that everyone can experience hope, wholeness and ongoing transformation—the fullness of life as God intended.

We saw this first-hand in Vava’u and we praise God for all he has done in the past 10 years, and believe for even more lives to be transformed and to experience fullness of life in Jesus in the next 10 years and onwards.

So, in conclusion: ‘May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace (shalom) as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit’ (Romans 15:13). May it be so!

Commissioner Mark Campbell
Territorial Commander

John 10:10

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full (NIV).

Heoi anō tā te tāhae e haere mai ai, he tāhae, he patu, he whakamōtī hoki. I haere mai ahau kia whiwhi ai rātou ki te ora, inā, tōna nui noa atu (PT).

Sa sega ni lako wale mai na daubutako, me butako ga, ka ravuravu, ka vakarusa: au sa lako mai me rawa vei ira na bula, ia me rawa vakalevu sara (FOV).

Chor to khali chori kare, jaan se maare aur nuksaan kare aay hei. Ham to aaya hei ki u sab ke jeewan mile, aur puura jeewan mile (FRHNT).

Tala‘ehai ‘oku ha‘u ‘a e kaiha‘a ki ha me‘a, ka ke kaiha‘a pe, mo tamate‘i, mo maumau: ko au kuo u ha‘u koe‘uhi ke nau ma‘u mo‘ui, pea ke nau ma‘u ‘o lahi ‘aupito (TMB).

O le gaoi, e leai se tasi mea e sau ai na ona ia gaoi, ma fasi, ma faaumatia; ua ou sau ina ia latou maua le ola, ia maua atili ai lava (SOV).

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