May the Peace of Christ Fill Your Hearts This Christmas
The busy and exciting Christmas season is with us again.
I’m reminded of the little boy and girl that were singing their favourite Christmas carol in church the Sunday before Christmas. The boy concluded “Silent Night” with the words, “sleep in heavenly beans.” His sister elbowed him, and said, “No. Not beans, peas!”
The way many of us feel by the time we are ready for Christmas, the song might just as well end with beans or peas instead of peace, because sometimes in the frantic rush to get everything done the peace of the season seems to elude us.
However, our feeling of the lack of peace in our hustle and bustle of Christmas preparations pale into insignificance compared to the desperate need for peace on the world stage as we face the prevailing threat from ISIS.
Today when our Western governments are desperate to find a way to bring a measure of peace and stability to our world and communities, the Christian church proclaims that Jesus Christ is, "the Prince of Peace". He is the fulfilment of Isaiah’s prophesy: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” – The Christian Church, this Christmas, confesses in faith that this prophecy of Isaiah was realised with the coming of Jesus Christ, the Lord as a babe in Bethlehem.
As Christians, embracing Jesus as the Prince of Peace means that first, we have peace with God. By nature we are at war with, however, the good news of Christmas is that with the coming of the Prince of peace came a new era, an age where it was possible for every Christian to enjoy peace with God. Paul’s words to Christians at Ephesus were these: “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace… He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near.”
Secondly, embracing Jesus as the Prince of Peace means that we can enjoy peace with ourselves. The Prince of peace has come and therefore by embracing him, I am at peace with myself because in Christ, I am forgiven, I am loved and I am accepted. My Prince of Peace has brought peace between me and myself!
Thirdly, embracing Jesus as the Prince of Peace means that I strive to be a peace maker. Peacemakers are not simply peaceable and peaceful persons; they are those who actively and earnestly endeavour to "make" peace.
I once read this about the peacemaker: “Peace-makers are a very different kind of people. They are different to peace-breakers because they set a guard on their tongue at all times, they think before they speak, and they are NOT confrontational just for the sake of it. They don’t have to give their opinion all the time and they are able to walk away quietly and avoid a conflict when the situation calls for it.”
May the Prince of Peace bless you with his divine peace at this Christmas season!
Ps Arnallt Morgan