Sitting on a shelf in my little bathroom (the one closest to my desk) is a Charlie Brown Christmas tree. Last year I found a plush Linus, dressed as a shepherd with his blankie on his head. I was so excited when I placed him next to the tree and squeezed the “press here” sticker on his foot. Every time I visited my little bathroom, I smiled at the scene and squeezed his foot to hear the familiar voice tell me the real meaning of Christmas.
Now, I understand the memory available on these little guys is limited and they couldn’t record the entire scene, but the more I listened, the more troubled I became. The edited version of the entire scene, something all writers must deal with, seemed to change the focus of the message.
“For behold, I bring you tidings of great joy which will be to all people and on earth peace, good will toward men. That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”
Do you see what I mean? They left out the part about the baby Jesus and focused only on the peace on earth part. The more I pressed his foot and listened, the more I realized how like our world this is. The masses are eager to spend their money on gifts, decorate their homes lavishly for holiday parties, and maybe toss some loose change into a Salvation Army bell ringer’s bucket as their good deed for the season. But, they leave out the baby Jesus.
Peace on earth sounds like a good thing. However, the peace spoken of at Christmas is possible only because of the baby. Don’t let the Christmas lights blind you to the Truth. God sent His Son on Christmas, as a baby. He is God and man. He is the Prince of Peace.
We can only find peace by accepting his promise to forgive all of our sin. We only need to believe he will. That’s faith. During his ministry on earth, Jesus healed many people of physical sickness. All they had to do was believe he could do it. It’s the same with our spiritual sickness, sin. Just believe the Savior Jesus has the power to forgive our sin and bring us peace. Peace is healing from sin.
Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
Do you have peace this Christmas season? Would you like to have the peace that defies human explanation and is oblivious to the confusion and tumult of the world around us? What do you think peace really means?