2nd Sunday of Advent ~ Peace


For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His authority shall grow continually, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom. He will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time onward and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this. Isaiah 9:6-7

The theme of this 2nd week of Advent is that of Peace.  We hear the announcement of the coming of the one who will be called the Prince of Peace, the Mighty and Everlasting Parent of us all.  This peace will not come through war or violence but the establishment of justice and righteousness for all.  It is a reminder to us that we need to seek peace where ever we can find it and that peace begins with us.

I think we sometimes forget that Jesus came to bring peace to the world, peace that will pass all understanding.  We read in the 11th Chapter of Isaiah that the lion will lay down with the lamb and the Cow and bear will graze together in the pasture, in other words, natural enemies shall become friends.  This peace does not come about by mutual destruction but through love and understanding.

Peace is a spiritual discipline, and like all spiritual disciplines, it begins inside each of us.  I have used the image of the stone in the pond and the ripples moving out from it before, but it is also applicable to this idea of peace.  If we obtain peace within ourselves, within our homes, within our churches, then peace will spread out from us just like those ripples.

The 19th century Russian Monk Seraphim of Sarov is quoted as saying, “Acquire a peaceful spirit and then thousands of others around you will be saved.” Seraphim is speaking of our internal peace, peace within ourselves and he is reminding us that is we obtain this peace there is no end to what we can hope to accomplish for the Kingdom.

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