Advent Devotional 1 – Peace in the Tumult

Advent Devotional 1 – Peace in the Tumult

He shall judge between the nations, and shall decide disputes for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.
O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord.
Isaiah 2:4-5

We wake and rise in the darkness, and the light is gone long before we return to bed. December is here, and winter has fallen on our world. We string up our lights and try to keep the chill at bay. The day’s news can steal our breath—and if we’re not careful, our hope, as well.

Who dares to talk of peace in times like these? Who dares to proclaim peace—between nations, between people, between the creator and us?

God does.

Glory to God in the highest, sing the angels in the Christmas sky. And on earth, peace, from now on. It’s a kind of peace the world has never seen; it’s now-and-always, a gift and a promise.

Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid.
-John 14:27
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulders, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace, there will be no end.
-Isaiah 9:2

The Prince of Peace is still at work—just as he was when he lived on the earth: in real cities, real families, and real life. He is found in places of political turmoil and relational strife, in bodies consumed by disease, and in hearts that wonder if he is even there at all. He came to confront the global darkness and to illuminate the dim places of our souls. He came to light up the world.

Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
-Isaiah 43:18-19

Many days we walk in the darkness and see only the desert and the wilderness and the rocks in hard places. They are there, and we ache to see them made new. But in their midst is a way, and a river, and a glow. This Advent, find the light that shines anyway—the signs that Jesus is moving in our world, and the ways we can carry his light, wherever December takes us.

Fan that flame this Christmas season by carving out time for peace. Dedicate moments in your week to sit quietly, to listen to music, to journal, or to pray. Take a walk before the sun has arrived. Ask God for his peace, and a deeper understanding of what living with that peace could look like.