Shalom. Shalom. Shalom. Love to all who oppose the Ukraine war and who are suffering because of this war or any other war. I was listening intently to Russell Brand a brilliant fellow comedian and political activist on his YouTube channel episode called ‘Oh.. This is why Ukraine is Being Attacked’ and his amazing guest Yannis Varoufakis said this;
‘When we face a war we must always firstly take the side of the people’ (meaning humanity) I shouted out a resounding YES! The world yet again is sadly remembering the truth that no one actually benefits from war apart from the war profligates who like vultures circle around in their dark flocks to grab, con and steal what they can now and for many years to come. Many Russians are paying the price for marching for peace by being thrown into prison and possible torture. Peacetime always comes at a heavy price.
War vs Family - who wins? Family. Because family if founded on Love is and always will be stronger than hate.
President Putin love or loath him has revealed the true depth of his character and now the race is on to prevent unprecedented levels of suffering not seen in Europe since the Second World War. Incidentally, President Putin banned overseas adoption overseas adoption on 1st January 2012 it was a death sentence to hundreds of children especially disabled and sick children, draw you own conclusions on ethics.
If you are reading this and have first, second or even third hand family knowledge of what a war suffering looks like then you are probably in shock and doing all you can to save humankind, as we all know the truth of the wartime question - Who is my family? Answer, we all are family especially in times of war. We are all connected and if one part of the world is hurting we all suffer. I like thousands of other left or lost war babies or children who have tasted first hand what the inheritance of conflict can look like, we know the truth that the real losers are the children as war initiates the legacy of loss.
The question is – what can we corporately do to stop it?
‘God’s dream is that you and I and all of us will realise that we are family, that we are made for togetherness, for goodness, and for compassion’
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Loss of society, structures, culture, learning, beauty and unity creates the desert of fear, famine and vulnerability as a whole nation destroyed, its people desecrated and whole generations become desolated in seconds as borders tumble and strongholds are weakened.
I was born in to the Bifran war in Nigeria that saw over 3 million people dead, currently the world is covered in war in many places such as Yemen, Biafra (still) and Afghanistan just to name a few places. In fact the truth is when one Nation goes to war actually it affects the whole world and I don’t just mean that petrol prices will violently increase as they have just gone up 6p overnight in the UK since writing this.
War creates orphans. I was one of the thousands. Does adoption and fostering work as a concept yes! Is it perfect NO.
'Holding onto perfection is actually preventing the solution' Russell Brand
Now I'm sounding like I'm a huge Brand fan, but these words are so true even through he was talking about the Ukraine war but actually this statement can be attributed to any 'war-like' situation. In challenging times we have to not be afraid to think differently or we are in danger of getting what we always got.
All my life people still ask me – Why didn’t you stay in Nigeria? You should NOT have been adopted to the UK! Still today the Anti-Adoption movement still stalk me with that retort and calmly I think to myself are they foolish enough to think that the day the war ends all is well and everyone can happily go back to piles of rubble? What about children who have no family because everyone had died? Overseas adoption may not be the best solution but vulnerable children need a real loving home even if it means leaving the country of origin for a season.
War actually destroys long-term fruitfulness in a society and every week of war you could say could become a 3 years of physical re-build, however, some wars take a generation to recover from that could be 50 to 80 years of recovery if ever as the emotional scars and blood on the land take longer to heal.
‘Go back to where you came from’ was a regular school taunt I received for my 5 years of being black in a white school. It always made my heart sob because I had nothing to go back to! War is desolation. It still makes me sad that these words will no doubt be said to the traumatised refuges who will come to UK unless we all stand up and fight for the vulnerable and disadvantaged by loving and looking after those who are fleeing battle.
So what now? What should we do?
I have no ‘magic’ words but I can share with you my new word or rather a word I am still learning and unpacking the fullness of. This word it is shalom. Shalom doesn’t just mean peace or is a lovely salutation it also means this.
SHALOM: Peace means: destroy the authority attached to chaos. This powerful ancient Hebrew language seen here in written and pictorial form is a super word when facing any conflict.
Destruction is a stronghold and throwing peace at it is a powerful mind-set on which everything else can be built. I am reading about the great African freedom fighters and their base-camp was always peace, if you fight a war with solely more war you get more war long term. Fire breeds fire.
Need to hear some Shalom? Checkout Laura C: Shalom
Very powerful and beautiful meditation to help you engage peace especially when feeling negative emotions. Try even speaking out the word Shalom and meditating into it - inner peace will come.
I had the pleasure to interview Laura C on the first Adoption Arena Podcast of Series 2 about her adoption journey and her music. Listen Back to Laura C Uncut
‘There is a time for war and a time for peace’, Ecclesiastes 3, James Bible. There is a time and season for everything.
During the 2nd World War apart from the war effort Winston Churchill said that at 9pm the whole country should stop and pray for peace and the war. I believe that corporately sending out love, sending out Shalom meditating on peace actively doing things that bring about ‘peace’ and helping innocent people who are in war zones will ultimately help change the atmosphere of violence in that Nation and actually the world.
So I encourage you to look out for ways to help and those ways and paths will find you! Shalom finds Shalom, love finds love.
Comedy for All
Love comedy and need to find something to smile about? 'Care for the Family' a wonderful Christian organisation that is committed to helping families in their own 'war zones' of life.
We have some special online shows that you can view from the comfort of your own home.
Tickets available for this stand-up show called 'The Funny Thing Is' on 11th March, 15th March and 19th May. Enjoy Paul Kerensa, John Archer and myself!
Well I managed to end this blog on a hopeful note - phew! I said that family wins in the end.
Please pray and mediate and send love to help the Ukraine people and Russians who stand for peace and resolution. The battle is not purely of flesh and blood it is against mind-sets and ideology that invoke violence and death.
Pray for those who shed innocent blood that they will repent and find peace and forgiveness
Thank you. Stay safe.
Shalom to you and Blessings
Thank you for reading :-)