In the book of Luke we read about peace and the difference in the reactions of Zechariah, John the Baptist’s father, and Mary when they heard too-good-to-be true news for their lives. Zechariah doubted the news of a miracle and Mary said she would accept whatever the Lord had for her. John wanted a sign that he and Elizabeth would have a son at their age and Mary’s response was whatever you have for me, Father. “the Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you like a shining cloud; and the holy, pure, sinless Thing which shall be born of you will be called the Son of God. For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.” (Luke 1:35, 37)
“Behold, I am the handmaiden of the Lord; let it be done to me according to what you have said. And the angel left her.” Luke 1:38 The Message Bible says it like this: “Yes, I see it all now; I’m the Lord’s maid, ready to serve. Let it be with me just as you say.”
I love these verses in Luke that tell us the heart of Mary, “For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.” Mary had a heart that trusted the Lord. She had peace in the whole situation. Belief brings peace. Trust brings peace. Faith brings peace. The opposite of peace is agitation, distress, fear, doubt. When any of us are agitated and distressed there is no peace in our life or our heart. There is little fruit. We are afraid to trust, afraid to believe, scared. PEACE IS A PROMISE!!! THE PRINCE OF PEACE DOES WHAT WE CANNOT DO FOR OURSELVES!!! He is true lasting Peace and He is there offering for us to partake of His Peace whenever we are distressed and agitated but so many times we choose not to let His peace work in our lives. As humans we lean toward fear so much of the time. People talk fear continuously. The media speaks death and fear daily. Jesus ALWAYS speaks and brings His peace.
Our world can become disrupted as had Zechariah’s and Mary’s. Their worlds would change and they had a choice to believe and receive what the angel was saying or doubt and be in fear. We like our safe, controlled worlds and even news of a miracle and answered prayer can disrupt what we want to be in control of. Instead of joy, peace, hope and faith Zechariah expressed agitation, distress and doubt. He wanted to KNOW how this could be instead of believing the miracle. Sometimes we want to know the reasons while Jesus emphasizes believe Me. We like to know why. Wanting to know the reason = no faith. We don’t always rest in Him and His promises. When life happens and makes a shift in another direction without Peace we cannot share Him with the world. Peace brings courage. “For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His Name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:4
December 25 may not be the actual birth date of Jesus but for me it is a day I can set aside to celebrate His birth. I like that the day we take time to celebrate is at the end of one year and near the beginning of another year. For me it is a great way to close out 2017 and praise Him and celebrate everything He has given me and done for me. I make extra efforts to rejoice with others and honor Him and give Him all the glory. As I meditate on the Lord and all His goodness and love it makes me excited for the coming year. I know 2018 will be full of everything 2017 had and much more. Christmas prepares my heart to dream big in Him, see His visions for the year and to know no matter what He has for me this coming year - For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.” “Yes, I see it all now; I’m the Lord’s maid, ready to serve. Let it be with me just as you say.” Luke 1:38 The Message Bible. You can personalize it like this –“Yes, I see it all now; I’m the Lord’s, ready to serve. Let it be with me just as you say.” I am excited for all the Lord has for me and I am enjoying this Christmas season knowing that He is with me. He is my Savior – my Lord – my Guide – my Answer – my best Friend – my Peace – my Joy – my Hope and He loves me and I can take all He is in me and share it with others. This Christmas and next year I want to be a forerunner going ahead sharing His unconditional love with others because my feet are shod with the Gospel of Peace. The good news of Peace that brings everlasting change to our hearts. Peace that causes us to believe and not doubt when we see our answered prayers. I desire to be like Mary and believe His too-good-to-be-true news when He tells me. I want to share the Prince of Peace with the world. These verses we meditated on in early December but I want to share them again today. His Word is powerful and never returns void. We can always meditate on His promises of peace.
“And God’s peace shall be yours - that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is - that peace which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” John 14:27
“And the effects of righteousness will be peace - internal and external - and the result of righteousness will be quietness and confident trust forever. My people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, in safe dwellings and in quiet resting places.” Isaiah 33:17-18
“So shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, without producing any effect, useless, but it shall accomplish that which I please and purpose, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. For you shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” Isaiah 55:11-12
“You will guard me and keep me in perfect and constant peace because my mind, both its inclination and its character is stayed on You, because I commit myself to You, lean on You and hopes confidently in You. So I trust in You, commit myself to You, Lean on You, hope confidently in You forever; for You are an everlasting Rock.” Isaiah 26:3-4
“For though the mountains should depart and the hills be shaken or removed, yet My love and kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace and completeness be removed, says the Lord, Who has compassion on you.” Isaiah 54:10
“How beautiful upon the mountain are the feet of him who brings good tidings, who publishes peace, who brings good tidings of good, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, Your God reigns!” Isaiah 52:7
“Glory to God in the highest. And on earth peace, goodwill toward men.” Luke 2:14
HAVE A WONDERFUL, BLESSED CHRISTMAS WITH YOUR HEARTS OVERFLOWING IN HIS POWERFUL PEACE!!!! Love to you all – Ed and Mona