This week we continue our advent celebration. Each week, four prior to Christmas Eve, we gather to light a candle and consider the coming of our savior. It is a wonderful time to stop in the midst of the season and truly focus on the reason for all the wonderful merriment of Christmas. This day we consider PEACE.
Silent night, holy night, all is CALM…..”calm” is not the way I would describe today. As I began my day I looked forward to wrapping gifts, running a few errands and preparing to welcome our daughter home from college. It has not gone quite as planned.
It began with a mid morning call from my mother that started with her letting me know a dear great aunt had passed away. She was 92. It was not entirely unexpected, but I am sad for the loss her family will feel this Christmas season. Then my mom led into the second reason for her call.
It is never good when someone says “First of all, I am not hurt…”. The conversation ended with her telling me about her being in a small fender bender. She had had a very traumatic day, but all was okay and no one injured. Though it was clearly not a big deal, it was still very unsettling as I considered all the “what if’s” that inevitably run through one’s mind. I am thankful for God’s protection and provision.
By noon, I was feeling like my day was back on track. I finished my errands and headed home to wrap gifts and make dinner for a family in need at our church. My calm erupted into chaos with a simple phone call. My daughter’s car was acting up and the dreaded “stop engine” light was the bearer of bad news. The next 5 hours were filled with prayer, phone calls trying to trouble shoot the situation, AAA towing her almost an hour away to the nearest city with a mechanic, realization the car would not be fixed in a day, securing a rental car, all while trying to keep my daughter form an absolute meltdown of understandable proportions. This, not surprisingly, resulted in 12 burnt cookies, and half a casserole dish dumped in the oven…confirmation that I am not good at multi tasking.
It is almost 10pm. Half a casserole and another batch of cookies finally made it’s way to it’s destiantion. I called my mom to be sure she was still okay and feeling the need to be in contact with her once more. As for my daughter, well she is back on the road heading home. It is almost “calm” in the house.
As I fianlly sat down at last to write this post I had to laugh. There, in my notes for this day, I had written a familiar verse.
Phil. 4:6&7 Be anxious for nothing. Instead through prayer and thanksgiving let your request be made known to God, and a peace which passes all understanding will be made known unto you.
Today for advent, we stop and consider the PEACE of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. The peace He gives us is beyond “all understanding.” It is beyond our comprehension because we seek a peace that comes from things being calm or all right. What He gives us is a peace in the midst of the chaos, when things may be less than all right. He gives us a peace that is the result of being forgiven and out from under the burden of our sin. Being reconciled with God we no longer walk alone.
2 Cor. 5:19-21 …God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting thier sins against them, and He has comitted to us the word of rconciliation….He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him…
His peace is not a life without storms, struggles, or complexity. It is a life lived knowing that in ALL things, He is sovereign, and He will bring us through All things for His glory. The birth, life, death and resurrection of our savior enables us to be reconciled with God, no longer separated from Him by our sin.
Peace is the journey around obstacles, over mountains, under burdens and into depths all the while knowing we are not alone.
I can’t imagine walking through this crazy life without Jesus by my side. Without Him, there is certainly no calm over here…