Years ago, I arranged for police protection at the church. When some of our members first saw patrol cars, I heard comments like, “I’ve lived here my whole life and we’ve never needed police.” No one says that anymore. The world has changed.
Sadly, the world is becoming a much angrier, violent place.
Road rage, domestic abuse, school shootings, unprovoked attacks, smash-and-grab robberies, riots in Portland, violence at Black Friday sales, metal detectors in schools, and flight attendants attacked by angry passengers, are just a few of the many ways our world is evolving in the wrong direction.
There will never be enough police, air marshals, laws, or metal detectors to change the downward trajectory of our society. But all’s not lost.
There is an answer. It’s exactly what you would expect a pastor to say. It is something I believe with every ounce of my being.
No Jesus, No Peace, Know Jesus, Know Peace
The answers to the ills of this world can only be found in the One who was born in the most humble of conditions. His entrance into our broken world is what we celebrate next week. He is called the Prince of Peace for a reason.
When Joseph discovered Mary was pregnant, his world was thrown into chaos. Filled with angst, anger, and sadness, Joseph decided the right solution was to send her away. But God’s angel eased Joseph’s mind and gave him peace in the midst of his unexpected storm.
The angel said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21-22)
The only way to be saved in our broken, violent world is to rely on the One in a manger. He is the only true answer.
Prayer: “Dear Gracious Heavenly God, as the weight of this sinful world presses down, remind me of the hope that comes from Immanuel. His coming is all that matters. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
At this moment, you may feel overwhelmed as life continues to spin in the wrong direction. You are not alone. As the world rages, the One sent to save you walks by your side. You are safe.
On Christmas Eve, make sure you come to church to give God thanks and celebrate Jesus’ arrival. It will give you peace.
I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.