ADVENT: STILL WAITING FOR PEACE
At the time of Jesus’ birth, the Jewish people were living under Roman occupation, desperately awaiting their promised Messiah, the “Prince of Peace”. But how do we reconcile this promise of peace with the broken world around us? Rita Elmounayer, SAT-7 International CEO, ponders on the source of hope for a weary, waiting world:
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6
When you and I read these words in Isaiah, perhaps the word that jumps out the most is “peace”. Looking at the world today, with its combination of conflicts, diseases, natural disasters, environmental crisis, we wonder – where is this promised peace?
Nowhere is this truer than in the Middle East. Yemen is hanging by a thread, Algeria’s churches have been closed, Syria’s conflict is yet unfinished, Lebanon faces economic crisis, Iran continues to harass believers, and Turkey grows increasingly divided.
But, despite all the above and more, what allows some people to have peace and not others? What allows some people to forgive their enemies while others burn for revenge? What makes some people bold enough to witness to Jesus Christ despite all threats and widespread persecution?
It is their hope in a hopeless world – the hope that God is with us. This is the whole meaning of Christmas and at the core of all SAT-7 programming. Some people go through hardships and pain alone, while others live through the same circumstances knowing they are not alone. Whether in war, persecution, sickness, bereavement, refugee camps, or even death – we know we are not alone, because when Jesus was born at Christmas, the wait was over. The God of peace is here with us now.
Pray for those who are waiting for peace and justice – particularly in Syria, Yemen and Afghanistan.
Pray that those watching SAT-7 this Christmas will experience God’s divine peace even as they go through troubling times.