So many of us hear this song every year around this time and it normally stirs warm feelings of peace and rest. Yet those feelings may quickly be lost or conflicted when we come back to the reality of this Christmas and the circumstances that surround this world in this time. Hearts are struggling greatly to find peace and calm.
So here is my question, was all calm and all bright when Jesus was born?
No. On the contrary, not to downplay the birth of Jesus, it was pretty rough and not that peaceful. There was a lot of anxiety at the time of Jesus Birth. Rome had overtaken the land and many were afraid for their life and heavily taxed. Most common everyday people and Jews were heavily taxed and oppressed. Both King Harod, as well as the Roman rule, left no room for civil rights or much justice. As you read through the four gospels and some of the new testament, it is plain to see that the relationship between the Jews and Rome was not a good one and led to a lot of oppression and death.
Many who had heard prophecies of the birth of the Messiah, who would set them free from this oppression. Some believed the coming of the Messiah would bring justice and freedom, that he would take over and would crush their enemies and rule powerfully. Even King Herod knew of the prophecy and was afraid of his birth. Yet in a great time of darkness, a small child was born in a lowly manger. Most didn’t see him or know who he was. Scripture says that there was nothing special about him. He was pretty plain. Honestly, the night He was born, probably wasn’t that calm either.
I imagine Mary was pretty tired, exhausted, and not wanting to travel while feeling the pains of labor. Yet, due to a royal decree from Caesar, they were required to travel to Bethlehem to complete the census. When they got there, they had no room for them to stay. Yet, God made a way and prepared a room in one of the lowliest of places. A humble stable where the animals would sleep. While most in the town were too busy to notice Jesus’ birth, God was leading Wiseman and Shepherds to the Son of God who was about to arrive.
“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, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 KJV
He came into this world not to govern or change things the way this world does or how many expected. He came to bring change in a way no one else could. His peace knows no end because his peace came from heaven and as he came towards the time he was crucified, he said this to those who followed him,
“I leave the gift of peace with you—my peace. Not the kind of fragile peace given by the world, but my perfect peace. Don’t yield to fear or be troubled in your hearts—instead, be courageous!”
John 14:27 TPT
His government is not of this world but heaven. Those who know him personally, who have His Holy Spirit dwelling inside, we have His Perfect Peace.
I know at times it is hard to find that peace when we are surrounded by so much turmoil, sickness, and anxiety. Yet I want to invite you this Christmas to invite Him to come with His peace to meet every area in your thoughts and heart where you feel overwhelmed, afraid, or sick. He came to bring you peace. It is a gift, not something you have to work towards, it is something He has given. It doesn’t mean things will suddenly be perfect, it means that your peace will not come from this world but rather from heaven.
I want to invite you at this moment to look with the eyes of your heart and see the Prince of Peace who stands with you and in you carrying the peace of heaven that not only changes you but has the power to change the atmosphere everywhere you go. Will you say yes to Him making room in you for His peace to dwell and for him to take upon his shoulders the burdens of this time and season we are living in.