Christmas Peace

20/12/23Christmas Peace

“Sleep in heavenly peace,” goes the hymn. “Peace on earth,” the angels sang. Yet many of us don’t “sleep in heavenly peace” during the Christmas season. We can’t sleep. Our “heavenly peace” is replaced with earthly stress. Planning, preparations and the pressure of finding the right gift at the right price; the pressure of having the perfect family get-together even when your family is less than perfect.

We adorn our homes and towns with beautiful Christmas lights and feast (if we are fortunate enough to do so) on choice food. Soon we are hungry again and the Christmas lights come down as January rolls in. Yet it is at this time of year that we remember that the first Christmas was far from the rosy nativity depicted on our Christmas cards. To a young, homeless couple, the Prince of Peace was born in a cold, damp, filthy stable. There was no crib, no midwife and the only fur coats were worn by the original owners. Jesus left the glory of Heaven and stepped into our world to save us.

After all the decorations are taken down, all the food is eaten, all the relatives have gone home, and the Christmas music stops playing, you wonder how it all could end so quickly. Yet there is one part of Christmas that goes on forever. Something that will not be taken away from you – the Christ of Christmas! The ‘food’ that He gives will forever satisfy. The Gospel of John tells us that Jesus is the true Light that gives life to the world.

If we look hard enough and listen long enough, the Prince of Peace will make Himself known to us. We see him in the wonderful acts of love from our Ethos Ambassadors who put on an amazing Christmas party for 30 elderly people in school last week (the eldest of whom was 100 years old). They put on a wonderful spread, danced, sang, did quizzes, played instruments, gave gifts and befriended the lonely and isolated.

We hear the Prince of Peace in the words of our Christmas bible readings, carols, orchestral performances, and dances at our 4 Carol Services this week, as we take time to press the pause button and reflect upon the reason we are celebrating.

We see the Prince of Peace in the generous gift donations with which we have been enabled to bless some of our school families by providing Christmas hampers.

Do you need peace in your heart this Christmas? The Prince of Peace is closer than you think, so linger a little longer, love a little harder and listen to his sweet whisper. When the lights come down and the festivities end, may you know the Peace of Christ in your heart as you journey with Him through 2024.

God bless you this Christmas!

Tracy Morgan (School Chaplain)