13 December 2005

Christmas: A time of Peace, Love, Joy and Hope

The birth of a child is a special time. There is much celebration and thankfulness for the safe arrival of the child. The family and friends come together in awe of the baby, this precious new life. We wonder of the possibility and potential of the future. We all have great hopes of the differences this new life can make on the world.

Two thousand years ago, a special baby was born. When his mother held him in her arms, for the first time, she also felt the joy and wonder of new life. This child had great potential and she had great hopes for what difference he would make in the lives of people.

We still celebrate the birth of this baby. So great was his influence. We know what a difference Jesus has made, not just to his family and friends, but also to all he met and all who heard of him. He made such an impact that at this time of year millions of people rejoice in the memory of his birth.

Jesus brought with him a message. A message of HOPE. A hope for the future, for a better life. A hope that pulls us through the hard times and lifts us up to new heights. A hope that gives us strength to move beyond who we are and our circumstances. With Jesus we know that all things are possible.

Jesus brought with him a message of PEACE. He teaches us to live in harmony with all people. He teaches us to turn the other cheek. He also brings to us an inner peace that we only feel when we are in communion with him. He brings us comfort in our times of conflict and sorrow. He gives us a peace that so many of us need to get us through the daily hustle and bustle of our lives.

Jesus brought with him a message of LOVE. The love of a heavenly parent who cares for us and wants us to have a blessed life. The love that we share with each other as family and friends. The love that we extend beyond this circle, into the lives and hearts of people we met and even people we will never meet. At Christmas time, we share in giving of gifts to show how much we love each other. So many of you extend this past your family and friends and give generously to people you don’t even know, so that they too may share in this love. There is no thank you, just a knowledge that a child somewhere will light up when they receive your gift.

Jesus brought with him a message of JOY. This joy is beyond any other joy. It is this time of year we truly celebrate and feel this joy in our lives. We celebrate the blessings we have – our family, our friends. We celebrate the joy of our lives. We celebrate the joy Jesus brings to our world.

This year as we celebrate the birth of Christ, let’s not just celebrate the baby in the manger, but the full message of Christ. Let’s celebrate the life, the teachings, the Hope, the Peace, the Love and the Joy of his life and what he brings to us every day.

May the Hope, Peace, Love and Joy of Christ fill your Spirit this Christmas and all the days of your life.

Andrea Putting