The candle we light for the second week of advent is the candle of Peace. The Messiah is foretold as the "Prince of Peace", and at his birth, angels proclaim “Peace on earth”. When Jesus says a goodbye to his friends, it is “peace” he leaves with them. We’ve all heard that the peace Jesus brings – this “shalom” – is not simply the absence of conflict. But sometimes that’s exactly how we think about peace in our lives, isn’t it? We feel at peace internally, feel our external circumstances as peaceful - to the extent that there is no conflict or tension. We seek a sense of peace about our decisions as we make them, a feeling of unconflicted-ness. But we also know that Shalom – the Hebrew word for peace – is so much more than that. When Jesus brings peace on earth, it’s not just a time for people to get along and stop fighting. It’s a restoring of the way the world was supposed to be. Shalom is wholeness. As-it-was-meant-to-be-ness. To be living at one with the way you were designed to be in the world is an experience of shalom. It runs deeper than a feeling of peacefulness. It is deep trueness in our being and in our world. The shalom Jesus brings puts the world aright. *This* is the peace we celebrate this week of Advent. Where in your life are you longing for peace? Is there some part of your life that feels as if your “shalom” needs restoring? Are you acutely aware of some part of our world being in desperate need for peace? That is what we wait for as we wait for Jesus this Advent. How might you lean into that longing this week, as we spend the week with Advent Shalom?

Posted by Jamie Bonilla at 2021-12-06 15:48:03 UTC