From the Pastor’s Desk

Regularly our pastor will share a sermon, reflections on religion, or what’s going on around the community and the world. His current message is below:

A Season of Peace?

December 1, 2021

For a Child is born to us, a Son is given to us; and the principality shall be on His shoulder; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, God, Hero, Father Everlasting, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

            December is a busy month and while Christmas is the main reason for the bustle, it can also be a focus that creates a space for peace. There are so many passages about peace in the Word it would be difficult to list them all. We know that peace is especially relevant at Christmas time even though it may seem far away.

            We have heard that the Lord is the source of peace but we might wonder how do we get that peace from Him? When our lives are busy and complicated we could really benefit from some peace.

            For the mountains shall depart, and the hills shall be moved; but My mercy shall not depart from thee, and the covenant of My peace shall not be moved, says Jehovah who has compassion on thee. (Isaiah 49:10)

            The Lord is saying here that He wants to give us peace and even if the world is in turmoil, literally earthquakes and destruction of mountains, His peace doesn’t change. So if we want peace it is not a matter of wishing hard enough or begging the Lord to convince Him. It is already there. So how do we get it?

            Ironically the best way to have peace is to make time for it. When our schedules are busy time can seem like the last thing we have to spare. This is the hard part. We need to make sure that we have a space for the Lord to give us peace. We don’t want to be like the inn which has no room for the Lord. Spiritually that would mean we are not willing to let the Lord in specifically not willing to be taught by the Lord (De Verbo 7). So making a space for the Lord means not just the time but also opening our hearts to His teaching.

What are ways to do this? Actually set aside a time in your day, every day for the Lord. Read the Word, ask the Lord for guidance, and pray, listening for His answers. An easy way to do this this season is to use the Christmas booklet that contains scriptural readings with explanations from the Doctrines and questions for reflection. Any way you choose, if you daily turn to the Lord,and open your mind and heart to Him you will find that there is room.

Bring ye all the tithes to the house of treasure, that there may be food in My house; then prove ye Me in this, if I will not open you the windows of heaven and pour you out a blessing until there be no room for more (Malachi 3:10).

So when our lives seem so full with busyness or stress that there isn’t room for one more thing if we make the Lord our first priority, He promises our lives will be filled up instead with blessings.

            The sceptre shall not be removed from Judah, and a lawgiver from between his feet, even until Shiloh come; and to Him will be the adherence of the peoples. (Genesis 49:10)

            “Until Shiloh come.” That this signifies the coming of the Lord, and the tranquillity of peace then, is evident from the signification of “Shiloh,” as being the Lord, who is called “Shiloh” from the fact that He pacified and made all things tranquil; for in the original, “Shiloh” is derived from a word which means tranquillity. (Arcana Coelestia 6373)