Christmas stirs a range of feelings from excitement to nostalgia to sadness. Children get excited anticipating the fun of gifts and parties. Adults become nostalgic, remembering holidays from long ago. Those who have experienced loss carry a deep sadness and struggle to find peace.
Christmas songs remind us of gathering our families to celebrate. But if our families are fractured or far flung, those tunes become sad reminders of the reality that the family won’t be together for the holiday.
Are we hoping for a sweet Hallmark movie of our life when there’s conflict or sadness? Perhaps our expectations cause the problem.
Why does Christmas stir such a wide array of feelings?
If I’m honest, I experience that mixture of feelings in December.
The message of Christmas breaks into the story of our lives bringing the gifts of hope, peace, love, and joy. In God’s master plan of salvation, He became one of us—a helpless baby who warms our hearts. But much more than that, the baby is the One who breaks into the darkness of life with the light of God’s love.
Isaiah 9:6 describes Jesus this way:
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 Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
The Wonderful Counselor is present, walking with us in the trials we face. The Mighty God is sovereign over the situations we don’t understand. The Everlasting Father comforts us and gives wisdom. The Prince of Peace calms our hearts with hope. Each of these names speak to us no matter what is happening in our lives.
The Prince of Peace spoke words of peace to encourage us.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27 NIV
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 NIV
The word of God is a source of peace for us.
Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble. Psalm 119:165
When we choose to focus on the gift of peace at Christmas, the Prince of Peace calms us.
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.Isaiah 26:3 NIV
When life crashes around us, it’s hard to keep the focus of peace. Stress upon stress weighs us down.
By looking the Lord, we find peace for everyday, even Christmas.
I praise God that He has comforted me in the sadness of loss, has been an anchor of hope in distressful situations, and calmed me when I faced cancer surgery. Reading the scriptures reframes my mind and heart to focus on the Prince of Peace.
Are you weighed down by stress and worry?
Look to the Prince of Peace to calm your heart. He became like us, lived on the dusty earth with sinful people so we could know his supernatural peace in the turmoil of life.
Peace is one of the 12 Words for Christmas, available on Amazon.