Jesus Constantly Preaches Peace to Us
And he [Jesus] came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. Eph. 2:17–18
Lord Jesus, what is Christmas? It’s you breaking into the shame of our sin and the illusion of our self-righteousness. Thank you for not leaving us alone, alienated, and runners from the heart of God. You came nearer than near, through your incarnation, bringing the peace for which we are desperate—a peace which can’t be found anywhere else.
You are the Peacemaker of all peacemakers, Jesus, for you, yourself, are our peace. On the cross, you exhausted God’s judgment against our sin. We now live under this grand declaration, “There is now no condemnation for your sin” (Rom. 8:1). And because we have been robed in your righteousness, we robustly sing, “His banner over me is love!” (Song of Songs 2:4). Jesus, by your Word and Spirit, keep blasting our hearts with this soul-liberating truth. We’re such an unbelieving people. Help us really believe, that God is at peace with us, through your finished work.
But, Jesus, you also preach the gospel of peace to us as participants in a vast array of relationships. You came, not just to reconcile us to God, but also to one another (as messy as that can get). You destroy all kinds of hostilities and reconcile all kinds of people. There’s no relationship either beyond the reach of your grace, or beyond the need of your grace. Forgive us for perpetuating bruised, distanced, chilly relationships.
Glorious Prince of Peace, one Day will reconcile wolves and lambs, leopards and goats, calves and lions. Until that Day, give us the desire, humility, and grace to be peace-seekers and peace-makers. Free us to live as agents of your reconciling love, even before the New Year arrives. Talk about a Christmas miracle… so very Amen we pray, in your peerless and peace-full name.