Recently, I took my family to a local Christmas concert. Coming in to the newly-renovated theater, I admired the building’s interior: beautiful plaster design, intricate octagonal tile work, and sky lights in the lobby. We made our way up into the circular balcony. Relaxing in the padded seats, we listened to a wide assortment of Christmas music sung by the adult and children’s choirs. The last song, “Hope of Consolation”, brought the climax. The song shared everyone’s longing for worldwide peace. The one introducing the song could hardly articulate the words. She choked back tears.
Hey, let’s pull of the sentimental glow of Christmas for a minute. People are struggling. Really struggling. Some are starving. Some are being tortured. Some are dying of AIDS. Bitterness, anger, and hate beats wildly in hearts — tearing, dividing, and destroying. Man’s sinful emotions reveal the desperate insanity. Currently, many of our American soldiers are embroiled in complex terrorism. People in our nation are receiving and flinging criticism at each other like shrapnel. From time to time, it seems like hell itself splashes right up on the shores of our world.
Some don’t like Christmas. It is the time when a brother and sister’s parents got divorced. It is that season three years ago, when a discouraged mother allowed the murder of her unborn child. It is the holiday last year when that young wife got hit by a drunk driver.
We need more than eggnog, mistletoe, and Santa Claus to warm our fearful hearts. Christmas parties can only do so much in numbing the pain. We need the continuing, conquering, all-victorious power of the Christ child–yes, that little humble babe in that smelly, ugly barn. He is not afraid to mingle with those who are vulnerable and dirty. He has seen it all–the wretched misery of mankind, and what lurks in our own hearts. He bore it. He became it.
So is there peace? Is there such a thing for the heart to possess? Yes, it is all in Him.
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.