A positive culture can be a hard thing to cultivate for some groups. It takes time and a sustained effort of like-minded thinkers to achieve. It takes intentionality and focus. A culture of peace can exist in any community, be it a family, a school, a church or a workplace.
So what is a culture of peace? It’s an environment where the focus is shifted away from who’s right and who’s wrong and towards finding a peaceful resolution where the maintenance of the relationship is the priority, and everyone can move forward.
So what is a culture of peace really like?
If you take away one thing thing from this article, let it be this:
In a culture of peace, relationships are strong and healthy.
That doesn’t mean there’s no conflicts. It’s just that the way they’re dealt with is different. The big difference is that in a culture of peace, when issues arise the people have a common language.
And this is huge.
With agreed ways of how to identify and resolve issues, a resolution is far more likely to be achieved healthily and well.
It’s actually okay and safe to think differently, but only if the culture around the differences is one of understanding. It’s safe because the people involved are more committed to the maintenance of the relationship than they are to winning or being right.
In short, people in a culture of peace:
- are free to be honest and feel safe
- speak kindly, with respect and consider others
- are quick to own and apologise for their own contributions to a conflict
- are quick to forgive
- have a common language and strategies for how to respond when relationships are strained or conflict arises – and they use them!
- which means they spend much less time, emotional energy and pain dealing with conflicts and relationships which have gone toxic
So how do we develop a culture of peace?
The key to developing a culture of peace is to seek to live in the ways which God has given us. This of course points to the Bible the example of his son Jesus and with the help of his Holy Spirit.
PeaceWiseKids provides a way for children to learn these strategies in a fun, interactive, age-appropriate way.
Where enough people in a community learn to live with peacemaking as a way of life, the fabric of the relationships of that community change and the relationships become stronger, happier and the community develops a ‘culture of peace’.