Is Peace Possible at Christmastime?

Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. – Psalm 34:14

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. – John 14:27

For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace. – 1 Corinthians 14:33

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace. – Galatians 5:22a


My husband has long contended that we are too busy at Christmastime. Too many commitments lead to too much stress and too little rest.

And he’s right.

But I imagine many of you are right there with me when I tell my husband that I don’t know how else to be during the Christmas season. It’s always a time of extra activities; while I can say no to some things, I can’t imagine turning down others.

If I did, who would direct the children’s play at church? Who would shop for gifts, or decorate, or cook special meals and treats at our house?

The thing is, I love doing those things – just not all at once. And while I have learned to streamline many areas of my life, I have a tough time streamlining Christmas. But I could certainly take a simpler approach to all of those activities.

And I know I should.

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Image by Johannes Plenio from Pixabay

 

The angels didn’t tell the shepherds, “Gird your loins, for behold! The Savior of the world has come, and with him will come a plethora of man-made traditions that will bring stress on earth, and bad will among men.”

Of course not! In the angels’ message was God’s wish for humanity to experience peace, and goodwill, through belief in the Savior; and that message of peace in our hearts and lives is woven throughout Scripture.

Obviously, Christians are not meant to be stressed out, especially as we contemplate and celebrate the birth of Jesus.

So, I ask you: how do you maintain a spirit of peace at Christmastime? Have you streamlined your yuletide activities through the years? I welcome your suggestions.


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14 thoughts on “Is Peace Possible at Christmastime?”

  1. It took a series of unfortunate events for me to streamline Christmas. I keep things pretty low-key now as far as our personal home celebration. The giftgiving has been greatly reduced. I alsoHave let go of many of myCommunity activities.

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  2. What helps me maintain some level of peace during this busy season is through practice. By practice I mean: practicing being in the peace of God ALL year long! Though it may sound weird to some to think we need to practice peace, think about. Other times of the year can get busily stressful as well, yet many feel overwhelmed (myself included sometimes) by the added stress we place on the Christmas season.
    Knowing this, I must be intentional in my practicing of being in God’s peaceful presence. Therefore, on July 7th, October 14th, etc., I need to make a conscience effort to acknowledge and live in the peace Jesus came to bring us. Like anything, the more I practice, the better I become at doing. And in this case, God is waiting to bless us with His peace!
    May you and your family know the depth of His peace in these days,
    Pastor Chuck

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    1. Thanks SO very much for these wise words. So much of the Christian life is indeed daily putting Christ-likeness into practice, through the transformative power of prayer and the working of the Holy Spirit. And, you’re right – a change in season should not change that.

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  3. That is a very good question! It reminds me of a post my good friend just shared on how she makes her season less stressful. She had really good ideas! Her blog is on WordPress called “Running with Scissors” if you want to check it out.
    As for me, I too said “yes to all” this year and am paying for it with a hectic schedule!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Heather, I’m glad you can relate – but only in the way that misery loves company. 🙂 Perhaps not misery, but busyness. Anyway, I will be sure to check out your friend’s blog. And I love the name “Running with Scissors”!

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  4. The Mary vs. Martha balance comes up again, right? I think the final answer will vary according to the individual, but for me I look at it with an occupation vs. vocation lens: if there’s an activity I feel called to do in service to God and want to do, then I should do so if I can. If there’s an activity I feel I HAVE to do, that becomes more work than service, and the emotional attachment to that activity is less. Perhaps this is an activity I could do without.
    Again, this is just my personal approach. Hope it helps. God bless– Mike

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do like that approach, Mike. I was just asking myself that today – are there things I feel compelled to do, simply because I’m a people-pleaser, or am I called by God to do them? That can definitely cut down on some things.

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