In light of recent, sad, events in Connecticut, it’s a bit difficult to write a post about peace. But as I was thinking about it, the Christmas story in the Bible, as well as the Charles Dickens Christmas Carol, show that Christmas is all about upheaval and change.
Think about Elizabeth and Zechariah, Mary’s relatives. As a very old couple they were given the blessing of baby John who would lead the way for Jesus.
Think about Mary, she was to give birth to a baby without having a husband yet or doing it the “normal” way.
Think about Mary and Joseph having to head to Bethlehem for a census while pregnant with this child that technically wasn’t theirs.
Think about Ebeneezer Scrooge who despite being quite successful was headed straight for hell if not for the visits of 3 Christmas ghosts.
All of these individuals lives were thrown into total and complete chaos all at this time that means celebration to us. But all of them ended up being blessed and thankful for the upheaval. I think that these truths reveal the reality of peace. Peace isn’t riding on fluffy clouds all day removed from the difficulties of this world. Peace isn’t being ensconced in a bubble of wealth separated from the struggles of poverty. Peace, as Mary and Scrooge learned, is knowing that everything happens for a reason and there’s a greater power out there. But more than that, peace gives you the courage and the strength to get through the more difficult days to get to where you’re headed.
As we reflect and come together as a nation in response to this tragedy and celebration of the season, encourage and support someone in need. Maybe a coworker needs to hear a good word. Maybe you’ll be kind to your partner instead of yelling. Maybe you’ll call a family member you haven’t spoken to in a while and seek forgiveness. Where can you start the healing process of peace?