Are you running from one activity to the next and adding to your To Do list rather than checking things off?  Does your impatience soar while you wait in a supermarket line or try to catch a sale that expires in minutes on a merchant’s online site?  Maybe you’ve found yourself in the wrong lane during heavy traffic. Or, as a friend recently relayed, showed up at a home for a party on the wrong night!

An unfortunate trademark of the holiday season is busyness: too much activity, unclear thinking, and not enough time.

     The Christmas season should be the most peaceful time of the year. Yet the declaration of “peace on earth” doesn’t characterize our days, thoughts, or relationships.

This week, I invite you to focus on Isaiah 9:6-7 (ESV)  This familiar passage written 700 years before the birth of Christ, often appears in our personal devotions. We hear it read in church programs and sung in the magnificent Messiah by Handel.


“For to us a child is born,to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.”

Four realities accompany Isaiah’s prophecy of the birth of Christ. These truths can be the antidote for our tense, frantic days, and lead us to evaluate, adjust, and rest. Together let’s consider the gifts available to us to sustain our peace.

  •  If you are looking for guidance and wisdom as you deal with priorities, activities, and relationships this season: He is our Wonderful counselor.
  • If you have unbelievable and challenging obstacles to overcome: He is our Mighty God.
  • If you feel excluded or alone: He is our everlasting Father.
  • If you are torn in different directions, in a relational conflict, or living with a loss, He is  the Prince of Peace.

Each name declares who Jesus would be and what He will do, even now..Scripture is filled with references to Jesus as our wisdom, the One who overcomes, our companion, and peacemaker. One is:

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. (John 14:27 NLT)

Can you find others? Perhaps this week you can also spend time meditating on Jesus’ names and how you can rely on them, not only in this busy season, but every day.

Is there a name that is particularly meaningful to you? Offer it as a prayer and see how Jesus responds.

He lives up to His name.


Wishing you a blessed Christmas. See you in January.

Well into the first semester, here are 15 Timely Thoughts to Encourage College Freshmen

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