Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others–the armies of heaven–praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” When the angels had returned to heaven the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.“ Luke 2:13-15
On this fourth Sunday of Advent, the fourth candle represents peace and is called the “Angel’s Candle.” The angels announced that Jesus came to bring peace–He came to bring people close to God and to each other again. Imagine that day in heaven when God told the angels that His son was going to earth to be the Savior for all people. What a celebration! And for those who were allowed to be part of the announcement to the shepherds, the angels who filled the sky with light, they would participate in an unforgettable experience. They knew the significance of the baby Jesus coming to the world. I think if I were an angel I’d be flying in loops, singing at the top of my lungs with the biggest smile on my face you’ve ever seen! Oh Happy Day When Jesus Was Born!
I would say that collectively we have not had a peaceful year. Finding peace in 2020 may have been a challenge for you. In John 16:33 Jesus said “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” This verse follows the explanation Jesus was trying to give the disciples about the future. If you will spend some time reading John 16 I think it will bring you great peace. Jesus is clear with the disciples and much of what He told them applies to our experiences today. In vs. 2 Jesus says “For you will be expelled from the synagogues, and the time is coming when those who kill you will think they are doing a holy service for God.” Things will turn upside down – right is wrong and wrong is right. In the beginning God knew that these things would happen. Jesus also tells us about the Advocate whom He sent to us, the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. We can cling to Him when our souls are restless in order to find peace.
Prayer for Today
This Christmas, Lord, come to the manger of my heart
Fill me with Your presence from the very start.
As I prepare for the holidays and gifts to be given,
Remind me of the gift You gave when You sent Your Son from Heaven.
Restore to me the wonder that came with Jesus’ birth,
when He left the riches of Heaven and wrapped Himself in rags of earth.
Immanuel, God with us, Your presence came that night.
And angels announced, “Into your darkness, God brings His Light.”
(prayer written by Renee Swope, Proverbs 31 Ministries)