Read Isaiah 9:6-7

Merry Christmas! We hope today is filled with love, laughter, and celebration that the King is born. As the prophet Isaiah anticipated the coming Messiah, he recorded: “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.”

Of all the names and titles the Christ is given, the hardest to see and experience in our world may be “Prince of Peace.” If Jesus is really the Prince of Peace, he doesn’t seem to be ruling with much authority or dominion. After all, we continue to see mass shootings, destruction, and death at every turn. The peace Jesus offers seems to be a slippery reality — if it’s any reality at all.

The Hebrew word for peace literally means “to tie up loose ends together into the whole.” To bring peace is to bring about a weaving together of life’s frayed edges, molding them back in as part of the whole. When Isaiah claimed that Jesus would be the Prince of Peace, he was claiming that Jesus would be the grand weaver. He promised that the Messiah would rule over our lives – not in a way that prevents all harm or evil from taking place, but in a way that takes the fragmented pieces and divinely places them as part of the marvelous mosaic of our lives. We need a Prince of Peace, not to prevent all of life’s storms, but to bind together all of life’s loose ends. As the Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8:28, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” This God at work in “all things” is no other than the Prince of Peace toward which Isaiah looked .

Christmas has a way of initiating both delight and disillusionment. Today, your house might be full, but someone’s absence makes it feel empty. The tree might be bursting with presents, but you really just want the presence of one person, and that relationship feels helplessly elusive. The table might be filled with food, but your soul feels like a barren land. In the midst of all the décor and tinsel, this past year might feel like a frayed garment that’s barely holding on. I want to assure you that the Prince of Peace is present. After all, the ultimate gift of Christmas is that the Lord of Heaven is also our Prince of Peace. The first step to walking in his peace is inviting him into our chaos, disappointment, and fear. Will you allow him to meet you in the fray and begin the process of weaving, of crafting the mosaic he calls your life? Call on the Prince of Peace to rule in your life this Christmas day!

Reflection and Response

Savor every moment of this day with family, friends, and the Prince of Peace among you. Pray for peace during your gatherings – to be united with peace, for peace to invade your heart, and for peace to reign on this Christmas day. 

By Ryan Paulson

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Watch the Sermon that accompanies this devotional