What We All Want for Christmas

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We all have our tales of surviving another family holiday. The tears, the fallouts, the unresolved tension, the obnoxious elephants that sit among us during dinner and the unrest it all creates somehow suffocates the child-like wonder this season once held. I heard many such tales this year from friends, coworkers, and even family members. All hopes deflate as our holiday expectations collide with the reality of broken families.

And yet the Christmas season boasts of peace on earth, goodwill toward men, and joy to the world.

But where is this peace? Where is the goodwill? Where is the joy?

We don’t find it in the checkout lines or wrapping paper, it won’t be found in full dinner tables even if everyone behaves, and it won’t be found in the expectation of a peaceful, civilized holiday. So as we look for peace, join me in asking some hard questions this year:

To whom are we looking for or depending on to bring peace?

  • Are you looking for peace in a boyfriend or girlfriend?
  • In a restored sibling relationship?
  • In parents who agree and are present?
  • In the next electronic device?
  • In a holiday that goes exactly like you want?

Now, I’m posting a Scripture below that looks kinda long, but just give me 20 seconds and read through this passage in Ephesians slowly; pay close attention to our previous condition and who brings peace:

            “…remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near.” (Ephesians 2:12-17 ESV)

Our condition was worse than we thought, isn’t it? It’s not just a tense family holiday, but a dividing wall of hostility, a separation from joy itself, a life of hopelessness. It was a condition that was void of any peace.

But who came? Who broke down the wall? Who became our peace?

Ah, the baby in a manger. He grew up strong and wise, He came to us who were bent on making war and He preached peace. He made peace. He is peace.

How does this knowledge help you face the remaining tension in yourself and your family? 

            You keep him in perfect peace
                        whose mind is stayed on you,
                        because he trusts in you.
            Trust in the LORD forever,
                        for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock. (Isaiah 26:3-4 ESV)

Depend on Him to be your peace. Your situation may not change; your family may still fight and grumble and walk in darkness, but you have a Rock to stand on. You can have peace despite the circumstances, because He dwells within you and He Himself is our peace.

Lift your eyes to Him this Christmas season. Don’t look at the waves of emotions swirling around you whether it be in your home, school, or workplace. Look to Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Then step out and reflect Him to a world full of battlefields and unrest.

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