Christmas is over for another year and in just a few days the last of the lights will be taken down, the final scraps of wrapping paper will be swept up, and life will return to normal. Next week, kids will go back to school, most people will return to work, and unfortunately, nearly all of us will be greeted with the same problems, anxieties and stresses that existed before we left for holiday vacation. It’s safe to say that by close of business next Friday, Christmas will be behind us and for all practical purposes, the season of ‘peace’ will be stored away until next November when the retailers remind us that there are only ’35 shopping days till Christmas 2017.’
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,
Prince of Peace
You know, when Isaiah prophesied of the coming promised One, he didn’t mean that this long awaited Prince of Peace would show up for only a few weeks out of the year and then disappear until some arbitrary date on the calendar rolled around again.
The best thing about the Gospel story is that our Savior’s advent into the world isn’t temporary like our Christmas decorations. It’s permanent. And though Christ ascended into heaven and is no longer physically present, His promise to the disciples is the same promise His followers can trust in today… Jesus said, “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)
So as you box up Christmas until next December and turn to face the unknowns of a new year, remember that though you may feel anxious at times, abandoned or afraid, you are never alone. And as you seek Him through prayer, worship and study of His Word, you can confidently trust that the Emmanuel of Christmas will be “with you always, even to the very end of the age.” (Matt. 28:20)
…And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.