If someone asks me, when is it too early to put up Christmas decorations, I would reply “Before the Fourth of July.” Seriously, I wish our Christmas decorations could be up at least six months/year. Marsha is probably a little more reasonable, but she is good about putting up the tree and decorations before Thanksgiving, and not taking them down until well-after the New Year.
One of the many reasons I love Christmas lights and decorations is the peaceful feeling of sitting in our living room when the sky is dark but our living room is bright with Christmas cheer. While I do not fear the dark (anymore), I do prefer the light. When I get up early in the morning (well before the sunrise this time of year), I love walking into our living room lit up with Christmas lights. Thank you, smart plugs!
Perhaps this is due to the nostalgia of the season, the contrast of the warmth inside to the cold outside, or my love for traditional Christmas hymns of worship, but Christmas lights and decorations give me an even greater sense of home sweet home than any other set-up or decor. And, with that sense of home comes a sense of peace.
Who does not love the reality of peace? When we feel peace, we feel good. When we lack peace, we feel miserable.
Of course, all of this makes me think of the best peace. So many things in this life point to our love for and need for peace, and that is because God created us in His image. As His image bearers, we were made to long for peace, and there is no greater peace than being in a right relationship with Him, flowing into right relationships with others. None of that is possible, though, without His goodness and provision.
On Sunday morning, Lord willing, I will be preaching through Isaiah 9:1-7 on “The Promise of Peace.” Sadly, we so often look for peace in all the wrong places, and the result is a fleeting peace and assurance that will only disappoint us.
I love sitting in our home when decorated for Christmas more than any time of year, but just like I am disappointed when we take down the decorations (the worst day of the year, in my opinion), so will we all be disappointed (and devastatingly so) if we seek to find peace, assurance, and fulfillment in anything or anyone besides the Prince of Peace. He – Jesus Christ – alone is the One who can give us a peace that will never disappoint.
Christmas decorations are great, but they eventually come down. Money is incredibly helpful, but loving it is the root of all kinds of evil. Good health is a blessing, but it can be lost in an instant. Safety is comforting, but nothing in this life can assure it. Family is a precious gift from God, but even the best of family can (and will) let you down at times.
Nothing in this life can offer and deliver the greatest peace, except God alone. He proved this by sending His One and Only Son to make a way for us to have everlasting peace. Have you experienced His peace? Do not settle for lesser peace. Rather, delight in the Only One who has and gives the best peace.
Praise God for His promise of peace, and His faithfulness to deliver! “For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).