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Almost Christmas –

Peace: Almost. Not Quite Yet. Working On It.

Luke 1:5-13

During the rule of King Herod of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah. His wife Elizabeth was a descendant of Aaron. 6 They were both righteous before God, blameless in their observance of all the Lord’s commandments and regulations. 7 They had no children because Elizabeth was unable to become pregnant and they both were very old. 8 One day Zechariah was serving as a priest before God because his priestly division was on duty. 9 Following the customs of priestly service, he was chosen by lottery to go into the Lord’s sanctuary and burn incense. 10 All the people who gathered to worship were praying outside during this hour of incense offering. 11 An angel from the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw the angel, he was startled and overcome with fear. 13 The angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah. Your prayers have been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will give birth to your son and you must name him John.

Luke 1:23-25

When he completed the days of his priestly service, he returned home. 24 Afterward, his wife Elizabeth became pregnant. She kept to herself for five months, saying, 25 “This is the Lord’s doing. He has shown his favor to me by removing my disgrace among other people.”
Zechariah and Elizabeth are childless and they are well-beyond normal childbearing years. In that culture, in that time, because Elizabeth is childless, she would be disgraced. (see Luke 1:25)

While Zechariah is going about his duties in the temple, the angel Gabriel appears to him to bring him the news that God has answered their prayer.

While this is life-changing news for Zechariah and Elizabeth, they are “transformed not by what they received, but by what they surrendered…their confusion and disbelief.”

When we work on surrendering our confusion, disbelief and anger, we not only experience PEACE (SHALOM), we become Peace (Shalom) for others.

The gift to become this Advent, practice being the least anxious person in the room.


Memory Verse: John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you. My peace I give you. I give to you not as the world gives. Don’t be troubled or afraid.”

Reflect on…

1) What do you need to surrender to experience “altogether peace” and to become peace for others?

Advent Gift…

Practice being the least anxious person in the room.
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