“Peace on Earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled”
Peace on Earth
“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” Luke 2:14
‘Peace on Earth’ is proclaimed throughout many homes amongst the Christmas decor. But many homes the stress of this holiday season is all but peaceful. The phrase in the old song seems impossible to grasp. Our world is wrought with wars, disasters, and political strife. Our homes are filled with dysfunction, stress, anxiety, and just overall busyness. It doesn’t take but a few moments on Reformed Twitter or on a Facebook thread to see that there is a severe lack of peace this holiday season. What Peace? How can I find this? I want this peace in my home this Christmas; how do I incorporate it into the chaos of this holiday season?
In my home, we have a large number of Christmas commitments. In the span of a week, we have ten obligations. TEN. And that’s not counting the ones that we really wanted to be a part of but were unable to. Oh, that’s too many, you might say. You should cut out most of those, you may be thinking. But each of these reflects something important in our life. Church, various sides of the family, dear friends. We race to put up the tree and to decorate the mantle. Christmas carols may be playing in the car as we dash from obligation to obligation. Kids a bit excited and discombobulated over the altering of our schedule can make for a trying evening. All of this on top of the normal daily obligations like dishes, laundry, mopping, my side businesses, preschool projects, and various adventures in toddlerhood. But with all of this, what has been severely lacking is a sense of peace.
Christ our Peace
Our peace this Christmas is not a Hallmark scene of the family gathering before the star-topped Christmas tree to read through Luke and to sing old hymns while the fireplace crackles. It’s not the inward warmth of joy as you go caroling at the nursing home or attend a candlelight carol service at church. Or the passing of biscuits around the table with beloved family members all gathered around. All of these things are wonderful – and I want to include each one every single year. But that has absolutely no bearing on what is Peace at Christmas.
We can find peace with God because He sent Christ to redeem us to Himself. Christ, then, is our peace. Not any feelings we may struggle with on the inside. All of our feelings are subject to change at a moment’s notice and have no bearing on what is true Peace. My emotions do not work perfectly, for my body is corrupted and tainted by the stain of sin. Regardless of how I feel, I can still have Peace. Even in the midst of chaos and exhaustion, I can know the Peace of Christ at Christmas.
His death atoned for my sin and He imputed His righteousness onto me so that I might be able to stand before the Father and be seen as Righteous, Redeemed, and Justified. The Christmas Carol quote is a picture of God’s peace that He brought to us in Christ. The World will never be at peace – until Christ’s return. Until then, we can rest assured – we can rest peacefully – knowing our standing in Him. I do not have to fear about tomorrow, or the state of my soul, for Christ the Redeemer has come.
” I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:1