It was Christmas Eve in 1914. Rain filled war trenches with mud, and only 100 yards of war-scorched earth separated scores of British and German troops. Rain finally gave way to a silent moonlit night on the battlefield. British lieutenant Charles Brewer received a report of a glistening light from a German parapet. Brewer carefully raised his eyes above the sandbags to see a Christmas tree. Another look revealed a number of Christmas trees along the German trenches. Brewer then heard a song coming from his enemy. The German words were unintelligible to him, but he recognized the tune of Silent Night. British soldiers replied with the same song in their own language, and the dawn of Christmas brought both military camps out of their trenches to greet each other in peace. This was the Christmas Truce of 1914.
Another odd assortment of people gathered together almost 2000 years earlier. A young couple welcomed shepherds, royalty, and even angels to the bedside of their newborn son. They had nothing in common except the baby. The identity of the baby outweighed any differences they may have had with each other. They gathered around Christ.
Christmas is coming once again. Let this be a Christmas of reconciliation and relational peace. I have known people who stopped going to church and/or family functions for years due to broken relationships. Are you experiencing separation from a friend or family member? Perhaps the best gift you have to offer is to seek or offer forgiveness. Jesus is the Prince of Peace, and we are called to be peacemakers with the ministry of reconciliation.
It appears our world is becoming increasingly divided. People divide over politics and secondary issues of theology. They fight about social issues and social media. What if one person simply laid down their arms and headed to the cross? What if we all gathered together at the cross? We may disagree about many things, but let us gather around Christ. Lay down your arms, come out of your trench, and gather about the Savior.
If you are looking for a place to gather together around Christ, you are welcome to attend the Christmas Eve service at Evangelical Bible Church (4:00 pm at 2891 5th Ave W, Dickinson). We would love to have you gather together with us as we worship Christ the Lord.
1 Corinthians 1:3 – Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.