Finding PEACE in Christmas: Advent Week 2 Reflection
Last week I wrote you about this tiny little thing called hope.
Today, I write to you about this thing called............PEACE!!!
You will not find peace in the places you search for it this Christmas. More Christmas parties, more church events, more gift giving, even....more volunteering of your time, money, and possessions....you will not find it. Why? Because the intent is right but the methods can drain you.
If you want proof of this.....look at people who do the same thing every year for Christmas. Same methods, same expectations = same results. No peace but looking busy makes them look productive. This is the opposite of what Advent is supposed to do. In Advent, we prepare for Christmas while also preparing for the Second Coming of Christ.
Does being exhausted every night from Thanksgiving until New Years Day---prepare you to be anymore like Jesus? Does subjecting your family to rigorous travel, tons of obligations, and guilt....is that necessary? What Would Jesus Do? I am pretty sure he would flip some tables over how much money people on stupid stuff at Christmas while not being able to afford their basic needs. Jesus probably shakes his head at what we have made Christmas into......ABOUT US!!!
This is why you won't find peace amongst others at Christmas. We are all too busy. Too busy at work. Too busy entertaining. Too busy.
If you want to find peace this Christmas, you will need to look for Jesus and also re-evaluate how you spend your holiday. Are these gifts necessary or you giving out of obligation? Do you really need to bake 20 different kinds of cookies? Here is the fun part. This is where we tell ourselves "but it makes me happy and others happy". Does it really? Maybe people feel like you overpower them by doing the same old year after year.
Here is a test. Take a Christmas and do things differently. If you normally do tons of gifts---go without this year. If you attend every event at church, cut back. If you have done the same thing with family for 50 years....change it this year. See how people react (INCLUDING YOURSELF). This will show you what is really important and where you try to find peace during the Christmas season.
Let's talk about the Second Coming of Christ. This scares folks but it should not because it should bring peace to you. When Jesus comes back, it will be a good thing. If you know him, you will be fine. If you do not know him, it will be a different story and it will not be as pretty.
I will give you some clarity. Knowing ABOUT Jesus and ACTUALLY knowing him are two different stories. People can park their butt in a pew their entire life and not know Jesus. Anyone can play the church game. But are you a disciple.....a student of Jesus? Are you open to him changing you..............EVERY PART of you? Geez, that is some deep and scary stuff there. But it is the truth.
I would love to help you find peace or answer your questions if you are seeking some spiritual guidance. Let me know!!