Summary: This is a Christmas message that talks about receiving God
THE GIFT OF PEACE
I love Christmas time…it’s the most wonderful time of the year
I love to listen to the old Christmas favorites and to sing along with them
I love spending time with my family and remembering all the special times we’ve shared
And Christmas is a time for us to be able to relax and be stress free…or is it?
Christmas can undoubtedly be one of the most joyous and revitalizing seasons of the year for us as believers
However, it can also be hectic and nerve-wracking
So much so that we lose our since of security and tranquility, which is the very thing Jesus came to bring us
So I want to ask you today, in the hustle and bustle of Christmas, where do you go to find silence and stillness?
There is a special word found throughout the Christmas story that should be very important and meaningful to us as we consider the birth of the Christ child
Used more than 400 times in Scripture, it is a term found interwoven in the prophecies of Jesus’ coming as a special gift to us from God
That wonderful word is PEACE
In speaking about the Savior, the prophet Isaiah reported in Isa 9:6-7 “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of His government and peace, there will be no end….”
Do you rejoice and rest in all the Lord has given you or is this the time of year characterized by impatience, agitation, conflict, and pain?
So as Christmas approaches, I want us to look at how we can maintain genuine tranquility in the midst of the pressures of the season.
Read Luke 2:8-14 / Pray
Many people believe the pathway of peace is through possessions—especially during the Christmas season
Many believe if they can just get the latest gadget, it will bring them peace and happiness
Worldly goods can never fill emptiness, give worth, or restore broken relationships
But we as believers should know what can – AMEN!
How can you preserve harmony within yourself, with others, and most importantly, with the Father?
Jesus said in John 14:27 “Peace I leave you; My peace I give you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”
TRANS: So how can you take hold of all He offers? First, realize that…
1. Peace of God originates with Reconciliation with Him
The word “peace” used in John 14:27 and in our passage in vs 14 are the same in the Greek “eirene” which means “security, safety, prosperity” it also means “to bind together”
When you trust the Lord Jesus as your Savior, He binds you together with Himself for all eternity
You never need to worry about your salvation because He makes you right with the Father through His death on the cross
No one can ever take that away from you…that speaks of the security aspect of peace as well as safety
The God who saved you…will never lose you…and has the power to keep you
John 10:28-30 “I give them eternal life, and they shall NEVER perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”
Listen, the real peace you have no matter the circumstance, comes from being reconciled to the Father…a reconciliation that can never be taken away
TRANS: Secondly, to have peace in this time of year, you must embrace the fact that…
2. Christ Takes Full Responsibility for Your Needs
You may not get what you want for Christmas when it comes to worldly things, but you will get all that is necessary for your needs
Jesus fed 5000 with five loaves of bread and two fish…12 baskets full of leftovers
Later in that same passage in John 6, Jesus declares this “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry…never be thirsty.”
Earthly tranquility is often based on worldly resources, which can and ultimately will—fail
So whenever you face situations beyond your abilities, talents, skills, and wealth to overcome, it is no wonder you feel overwhelmed, anxious, and discouraged
However, realize that God is completely capable of helping you, regardless of the circumstances
There is nothing too big or too small for God to handle
Even in the midst of the storms of life, Jesus is in the boat and He can instantly bring a calm, a peace, a tranquility to any situation that arises