Below is a piece I posted two years ago today. I believe it is still pertinent in so many ways. Sometimes I need to search my heart and turn my own words into action.
The day before Christmas Eve is one of my favorites. The following two days are always busy. This day seems like a quieter time to enjoy the season, the music and the message.
I saw the bumper sticker today, "Let Peace Begin With Me". I began thinking of the Christmas songs we hear each year. We sing, "next year, all our troubles will be miles away". But we sang the same song last year and the years before that. Yet our troubles remain as close as the next moment.
We sing of "Peace on Earth", but we know lasting peace will remain elusive until the final day of judgment.
Where then do we find the peace of which we sing, or the freedom from trouble which we desire?
As with all things in life that truly count, a peaceful heart will come from within.
Peace will come when we accept ourselves as unique individuals, each with our unique blessing.
Peace will come when we accept others without prejudice of any kind, not merely a tacit acceptance to which we pay lip service, but acceptance without reservation or condition.
Peace from within will often require making a stand for what we know to be right, knowing it may not be popular with coworkers or friends.
Peace may entail becoming an advocate for those unable to speak for themselves. The needs are many.
Peace will not come by self promotion, or allowing our deeds to give us an inflated sense of importance.
Ultimately, peace will come when we accept the true message of Christmas, "For unto you is born this day, in the City of David, a Savior, which is Christ The Lord".
Once we accept the real meaning of Christmas, our view of our world, and ourselves is forever changed. A changed heart will be the source of our peace. As the bumper sticker said, "Let peace begin with me".