Daily Thought For December 26, 2017
We Need Peace
“For it will not be you who speak
but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”
We might suppose that the day after Christmas would bring us another cozy Gospel story of angels and shepherds, or Magi traveling across countries, following the light of a star. But today, instead, we recall one of the first martyrs of the early Church—Saint Stephen.
Stephen’s story seems to break rather abruptly into the Christmas season. The rage of the crowd and Stephen’s violent martyrdom startle us. It seems so much at odds with the utter wonder and simplicity of God coming among us as a newborn baby. New hope was born among us, cause for great joy. The story of Stephen is given to us today as a challenge to bring this joy out into a world that often resists it.
As too soon the lights and decorations begin to come down around us and life quickly returns to more “ordinary” time, it can be difficult to live out the joy and hope that we celebrate each Christmas. When we experience moments of suffering or fear, the peacefulness of the crèche scene may seem very far away. But Jesus promises us that he will always be with us.
Just as Mary and Joseph lived each moment leading up to the birth of Jesus—and after—with trust in God’s faithfulness, Jesus calls us to put our trust in him.
Jesus, our world profoundly needs the peace and hope that we celebrate each year at Christmas. Send me your Spirit, that I might speak your words of peace in moments of pain and difficulty. Help me to trust in your promise to always be with me.
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Rom 8:31)
Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 84–85). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.