For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
The Tenth Gift of Christmas: Peace
If you’ve ever seen a nursery of newborns at a hospital, the serene scene almost makes you forget the arduous process by which those babies arrived in this world. Almost instantaneously, the chaos and pain of labor dissolve into the sweet peace of a new life.
I somehow doubt that Mary felt much peace in those final hours of her pregnancy. Her circumstances were pretty horrific. And yet, can’t you envision how that one last push brought the Prince of Peace into this world, ushering in a supernatural calm that is rarely exemplified as beautifully and tangibly as a mother clutching her newborn.
Of course, peace shouldn’t have been a surprise to Mary and Joseph or others who had heard the prophecies of the coming Messiah. They were promised that a Prince of Peace would be their salvation. Given that time in history, they were a people who had lived for years under persecution from various rulers and kingdoms. They were desperate to know peace. They probably didn’t expect it to arrive in the form of a baby, but they were first-hand witnesses of the promise of peace made good.
I sometimes chuckle when I see wrapping paper with the words Peace emblazoned across the sheets, while I’m wrestling with tape, trying to find my lost scissors again only to forget what it was I had just wrapped! It’s not a peaceful process! Christmas time is full of un-peaceful moments. It’s hectic and busy. Balancing work and holiday time, travel and gifts and Christmas cards and school or church productions can quickly turn this season into a headache.
But that was never the intent. Christmas was indeed the delivery of peace. It is the peace of salvation. It is the peace of an all-powerful God come down in the body of a human.
Do you know peace this Christmas? Have you ever contemplated the possibility of finding peace by giving it away? This holiday, while we juggle the hectic holiday schedule we create for ourselves, millions around the world no longer have anything to juggle. There are over 60 million refugees in the world right now. They don’t have a Christmas meal to manage because they barely have enough food to survive the week.
You can send peace to them this year in the form of a food box. The BGR Gift Catalog contains a box of food that will feed a family for an entire month. Can you imagine the peace that could descend upon a hungry household who, for once, could rest easy, knowing their children would be able to eat tomorrow and the day after that and the day after that?
Christmas is a time of busy activity, but at its heart, it is a season of peace. This year, worry less. Fill your calendar less. Focus more on the pure peace a baby boy brought into this world and then take action and share that peace with others in need.
Father, thank you for sending us a Prince of Peace wrapped up in swaddling clothes so many years ago. Lord, as the holidays are in full swing, please help my heart stay focused on you, your love and your promise of comfort, peace, and joy. Be with others who have not known peace for a long time. Help my gifts extend your love and goodwill to them this Christmas, so that they too may come to know the truth of our Savior—the One and Only Prince of Peace.