"Peace . . . from Above and Within"
What comes to your mind when you think of the word "peace"?
What are some of the reasons you find it difficult to find peace?
What things trouble you the most?
The good news is that peace is possible. And the Bible tells us how.
God’s promise of peace for the children of Israel and the world: (read Isaiah 11:1-10; Luke 1:67-79)
LK 1:78 By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us,
LK 1:79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."
We can find peace – from above and within – as we seek to let Christ into our hearts and lives. Some suggestions: listening to carols or other peaceful or uplifting music, taking a walk, reading or meditating upon related scriptures for the season, burning a candle or even some frankincense, myrr.or other relaxing fragrance.
And we can help others know that peace as well, by how we think and act.
Check in with a prayer partner on your wish lists.
A large part of spiritual growth is surrounding oneself with those who will hold us in loving accountability.
Think of a situation where you desire peace, either in your life or in the world. Prayerfully ask God to guide you in doing something this week to strive for peace. It could be writing a letter to someone from whom you have become separated.
You can refine your own inner peace through outward action. Practice peace. Where you hear gossip, offer a good word. Where people experience broken-ness, do what you can to heal. Where sickness and death prevail, offer a moment of life’s joy.
If you have tumultuous relationships in your life, do what you can to bring about peace (Romans 12:18). Pray for your enemies as Jesus taught, that they may be blessed and find peace by trusting that God knows their deepest needs.
If you know of someone who is struggling with spiritual turmoil, anxiousness about life or death, or searching for deeper meaning to life’s challenges, take the time to listen and pray with them. Offer a copy of the Upper Room or other devotional booklets.
Listen to others. To find peace, people need to feel heard and to know they are not alone in their suffering. Infuse the conversation with God’s grace, perhaps sharing today’s Scripture. Let the hope and peace of Christ assure you that no matter the situation, peace can prevail.
Be mindful of others as you shop during this season. The Holy Spirit may lead you to someone who has a deeper need for inner peace than for money to buy presents.
Invite people to worship with you. Connecting your actions with following Jesus may stir curiosity in people who want what you have. Let others know that through Christ, people will find peace and hope.
May you experience and share a Life-Giving Christmas this year!