Hello friends. I wanted to take a break from our series, 'The Battle' to bring a short Christmas message. Since we began, we have looked at how we get true peace in our lives. I hope you have been following regularly. If you have, you might recall that I mentioned that we would hear a lot about the subject of peace during this season. That is appropriate because we celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace. It is a wonderful time to reflect on what that really means. Unfortunately, a lot of what you may hear or see this Christmas season falls far short of bringing the real message about "Peace on Earth, Good Will toward Men". There are lots of neat little messages on cards and gift wrapping paper. Even on television, you might see a similar phrase or hear an announcer say something like "May you be filled with peace during this holiday season". This time just naturally brings about thoughts about peace. It is important, though, to realize this truth. Peace does not come in a sound bite. Why do I bother saying this? Well, stick with me here and I think you'll see.
It seems in our society, people are always looking for the quick answer to life's situations. We want to order up solutions in life as we do our food at Taco Bell or McDonalds. We can tend to run our whole lives like this. If we don't get what we want quickly, we give up and try something else. Have you heard the commercial telling you that they can teach you how turn your child's bad behavior around in one minute with their program? How about the diet where you lose 20 lbs in one week? Even our news programs try to give you all the information in a 10 second sound bite. The commercials change their images in less than one second because our attentions spans are so short. Everything has to happen in a hurry.
If you think that your spiritual life works this way, you are bound to be disappointed. It is true that the Lord will bring special moments of peace into your life when you need it. However, a life that is filled with peace and joy is the result of spending a great deal of time getting to know Him. It does not and cannot happen quickly. As in any relationship, it takes time to get to know God. It takes time to build trust. It takes time to study and understand God's word. Without understanding God's written word you cannot expect to know God. His word is the primary way that He reveals Himself to us. One of the traps we fall into is thinking that one event or one message can bring about spiritual maturity. Don't think that everything is going to hinge on one experience. Instead, we need to look at each day as a chance to draw a little bit closer to our Lord.
I pray that during this Christmas season, you will take time to get to know Him better. Spend time reading His word and talking to Him in prayer. Think about the meaning of the child that was born, Emmanuel-God with us. He is the one, who brings peace to us as individuals and one day will bring peace to the whole world. At His name every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ, the baby born in a manger, the Son of God who died on the cross and rose from the dead, that He Is Lord! Amen and Amen
May God bless you as you celebrate the Savior's birth,
PS: Next week, The Battle Pt 3. You won't want to miss this one!