By Kirsten Hancock
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
There is much to be afraid of in our troubled world. Reckless drivers. Drug and alcohol addiction. People who do not have our best interest at heart. Gun violence at concerts, churches and other places we assume we ought to be safe.
Will my body outlast my mind? Will I outlive my savings? Will I outlive my beloved spouse? Are my children safe playing outside? Will I have a job tomorrow? How long will I be unemployed? How am I going to make ends meet this month? How long will this physical pain last? How much longer do I have to live? There is much to trouble our hearts on this earth.
When I was a child growing up in the 80s and 90s, I played outside a lot with my younger brother. I also watched the evening news with my parents. I’m trying to remember when the news became something from which we protect our children.
I recently spoke to some parents in our Woodland Church family who said they don’t watch the news in their homes because the local news is too violent and the topics in our U.S. News are too uncertain. “It’s too stressful,” they said, “to race to the mute button or change the channel on the television to censor what goes into our children’s minds and hearts.”
The one thing we never have to be afraid of in this world is the absence of God’s Love. There was room in Jesus’ heart for us when He died on the Cross. There will always be room in God’s Kingdom for us to find purpose and rest. There was and is Room in the Inn for each of us to worship the Christ child. Don’t be afraid or let your heart be troubled. “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you,” says the Lord. Amen.