The topic for week 4 of advent is Peace. And when you look at peace through the lens of the cross, you find that it takes on a different form than what the world calls peace. Indeed, "Peace on Earth" become two different objectives depending on if you follow Jesus or the world.
In the world, peace is achieved through the absence of conflict. It's the merry times of the holidays with family around a dinner table. It's the peace of not having to lock your doors at night and to not live in fear of your enemies. The method of this peace can be won through mediation or through eliminating your opponent. Peace is akin to tranquility, no matter the method used to achieve it.
In the Kingdom of God, peace is given no matter the presence of conflict. Peace, in fact, surrounds you in conflict to give you strength. Peace is won not through victory in strength, but through sacrifice, forgiveness, and repentance. The method of this peace is found through knowing, following, listening, and trusting your Lord Jesus no matter your circumstances.
As you enter into this final week of advent, take a look at your life and what you think peace means. Is it the type of peace of this world, or the peace found in Jesus? And as you contemplate God Incarnate as babe in the manger who would one day endure the cross, how can your life better reflect the peace that Jesus gives us?