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Quiet your soul this Christmas

This Christmas, God invites us to exchange striving for hope and grasping for receptivity.

CULTURE MAKING AUTOR 144/Rene_Breuel 24 DE DICIEMBRE DE 2023 15:00 h
Photo: [link]Chris Barbalis[/link], Unsplash CC0.

I spend most of the year planning and striving and getting things done. They are good things, no qualms here.

But I often end up feeling stretched. And I arrive at the end of the year anxious for the future and resentful for what I couldn’t yet accomplish. Do you too?

Here’s a bit of news that doesn’t depend on your efforts: “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)

Isn’t that great? Advent is the irruption of God’s joy on earth. Festive angels sing before shepherds who struggle to realize the magnitude of what they see.

So do we, accustomed as we may be to the Christmas season and its recent commodification and banalization. Expectant children may have become hardened adults who know the drill and hum the carols while checking the ups and downs of the stock market.

The birth of the Savior is good news for you. Right now. Receive it in faith. Overcome the cynicism that might sneer on the angelic announcement. Jesus was born, and that changes everything.

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote, “Happiness is a butterfly, which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but which, if you sit down quietly, may alight upon you”. It’s a secular truth that becomes even more poignant in the spiritual realm. Salvation is God’s initiative, not ours.

This Christmas, God invites us to exchange striving for hope and grasping for receptivity. The greatest news of all time broke into history independent of our effort.

And it breaks into our hearts when we stop our exertion and lift our gaze to the Lord. All we need to be joyous is to quiet our souls and turn them to God.

René Breuel, evangelical pastor in Rome.





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