Peace and Goodwill

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- Jon Wise 

This reflection is taken from our Advent/Christmas Prayerbook. Download your free copy here.

“Peace on earth and Goodwill toward men.”  To many of us, these feel like the fleeting words of a feel good moment like the end of “It’s a Wonderful Life” or “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” These words feel fleeting because we all know the condition of the world. And in moments of real honesty, we know the condition of our own hearts. It’s not really that peace is fleeting but more that war, malice and hatred are barely kept at bay. 

In reality, these words aren’t the trite utterance of an ancient fable; they are a proclamation of something new. A new way of living is being announced. It’s the jumpstart of something that we’ve been waiting for since the prophet Isaiah told us that one day we would “weep no more, that God would hear our cries and respond.”

God responded and continues to respond to our cries in the person and presence of Jesus. Yet, we still seek the peace that we know he offers. We still wait for the completion of the work that’s begun in him. As we wait, let us work towards the completion of what he began on the day that it was said, “Peace on earth and Goodwill toward men.”