Fourth Advent: The Spirit of Christmas. Peace

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As we light the fourth candle in the Advent wreath, the candle of peace,  I wonder if we are really experiencing any significant amounts of peace in our lives at this busy, hectic and sometimes frustrating time of year.  Just because we celebrate the season that depicts the advent themes, love, joy and peace, it doesn’t necessarily mean we truly are achieving all its benefits.  We sometimes fool ourselves into thinking that if we try really hard to do everything perfectly, keep every tradition, give, get and do the right things, those desired qualities will be ours in copious amounts.  But peace, especially, will only be achieved and retained if and when we follow the mandate set out by scripture about peace.  2 Thessalonians 3:16 states, “Now may the God of all peace, Himself, continually grant you peace in every circumstance.”  So right away we discover that it is God alone who grants us this desired, somewhat elusive quality called peace.  Therefore in life in general and even more specifically, Christmas, we obviously can have peace.  But there are certain criteria we must follow to achieve this Christmas bliss… and first Corinthians 10:31 says this, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”  Then First Peter 4:11 continues by saying  “in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen”  So the real question in regards to Christmas must be, then, are we glorifying God as we prepare and as we celebrate?