Merry Christmas. Around the world, it’s a day of children, innocence, love, life, and family.
And my greatest hope for this Christmas Day is that our world recalls how valuable those things are.
They’re more important than politics. They’re superior to social media. They eclipse the news and the things we fight about all year long.
Some may say those are what we’re fighting for, but if communities the nation over would put them first, there’d be a very different America.
Presently, we’re living in a time of war.
And unlike the ones we’ve fought in the past, this one — or these many — don’t offer any clear prospect of a ceasefire.
If Betsy Ross sewed a flag today, the required symbol would represent an argument.
Online, people make sport of “owning” their opponents by one-upped insults. In the end, what good does that do?
The riots on the web match our ones in the streets. Chaos and brutality have become our new normal.
When not on our phones, we’re navigating a fractured and suffering society.
In the past few years, friendships have ended over politics. Families have lost loved ones, and not to death.
We’re supposed to know better — that’s one reason we’ve annually hailed “Peace on Earth.”
But there isn’t peace — not in many homes, not in many towns, not in a country that once proclaimed itself united under God.
How do we get back? How do we end the war?
We must begin within. We’re at war with the very essence of what we are: creations.
Rather than focusing on our blessings, we try to proclaim ourselves in control — we’re “empowered,” we’re prideful, we’re magical.
I hope we can find inner peace. And maybe the key to that is the ultimate thing Christmas is about.
If we can truly find the heart of Christmas — the gift from God, just as every life is — we can find humility.
And in doing so, perhaps we will make peace — with our friends; with our neighbors; with our families. With ourselves.
When we love, we are fulfilled. When we give, we are made better. When we acknowledge there is something more powerful than us, we can rest in trust and hope and even fear.
The future is unknown. Life is hard, pain is real.
We can’t overcome it. We can’t outpower it. But we can believe in a Creator who can.
We can adhere to a hope that brings us together.
We can cling to our families and protect our children.
One way to keep them safe is to teach them they’re loved.
And not just by us.
They are adored and embraced by something more, something Christmas is all about.
And this is Christmas. This is children and innocence and love and life and family.
And in truth, we are all children.
This is Christmas.
And in our childlike hearts, I hope we all find it.
While we’re there, may we pray for Peace on Earth.
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