Bethlehem was all hustle and bustle as people from all over returned to pay their taxes. Street vendors saw the opportunity and likely set up early. Inn managers were a mix of excited and stressed as their rooms filled to capacity. Tax collectors saw dollar signs as people entered the streets of the ancient city to participate in the census.
However, into the chaos came calm. A baby born in a barn stable. Yet, the merchants, the innkeepers, the tax collectors and all those coming to pay their dues in answer to Caesar Augustus' decree missed the arrival of the Prince of Peace. Why? They were preoccupied.
How often during the holidays are we preoccupied? So often it's our busyness, tension, anxiety and stress that prevent us from embracing who our souls need most, the Prince of Peace (Isa. 9:6). John wrote, "He came to His own, and His own people did not receive Him" (John 1:11). Why? Perhaps because they were too stressed-out and anxious over all that had to be accomplished.
We are His own treasured inheritance. Are we too preoccupied to worship? Are we too stressed to praise Him? Are we too anxious to receive His calm?
The Prince of Peace offers you His peace today. One of the best ways I know to access that peace and to calm your anxiety is to fix your thoughts on God's promises of peace. Praise Him that His promises are for you.
3 Promises of Peace to Calm Your Anxiety
— "You will keep in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trust in You" (Isa. 26:3). Friend, He promises you peace as you fix your mind on Him. Jesus is the one who is righteous, faithful, good, and loving. Reign in your thoughts and center them on the Prince of Peace. As you strengthen your trust in Him, the Holy Spirit will calm your anxiety.
— "I will both lie down in peace and sleep; for You, Lord, make me dwell safely and securely (Ps. 4:8). Often when we're stressed or anxious, the first thing that goes is our sleep. We can't settle, or we wake in the middle of the night with a thousand worries pummeling our minds. Remember, the Prince of Peace offers you His peace. Shift your focus from your worries to His almighty character. Praise Him for every quality you know to be true about Him, and my guess is you'll fall back asleep. As you dare to praise Him above your anxiety, the Prince of Peace will wrap you in His blanket of peace and give you rest.
— "I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But be of good cheer. I have overcome the world." (John 16:33). What a promise for us to cling to during these wonky days. We shouldn't be shocked by the trouble that surrounds us because Jesus warned us that this world would be filled with trouble. However, Jesus has already overcome the world. The victory has already been won! Friend, stand in the victory that's yours. The Prince of Peace is able to give you calm in the worst of circumstances because He accomplished your peace by His crucifixion and resurrection. Take heart! Grab hold of courage! It's going to be okay because the Prince of Peace is ruling on the throne. Make room for Him. Pause each day and in the quiet of your heart, reaffirm your trust in the Prince of Peace.
Prince of Peace, I confess that often worry, stress and anxiety flood my soul. Wrap me in Your peace today. Where my thoughts are chaotic, bring calm. Where there's tension, bring tranquility. Hush the inner hurry that so often takes me captive, and instead help me to be still enough to hear Your voice.
Lord, help me today to create the space to worship the wonder of who You are today. I pray for the grace to allow the Prince of Peace to rule in my heart. May the peace that surrounds me go beyond human understanding and may all who I come in contact with today see and feel the presence of Christ in me.
Becky Harling, a bestselling author, is a popular speaker at conferences, retreats and other events. She is author of 11 books, including The Extraordinary Power of Praise. Becky is a certified coach with the John Maxwell Team and offers parent coaching. Becky and her husband, Steve have traveled and ministered in over 70 countries around the world. She is the parent of four grown married kids and Mimi to 14 grandchildren. Connect with Becky at beckyharling.com, harlingleadership.com, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
This article originally appeared at beckyharling.com.
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