The First 15

Saturday December 12, 2020

by Mike Ramsdell

Opening Prayer

Begin this new day by praying this prayer out loud. As you are able, consider kneeling as a physical expression of your commitment to Jesus as Lord of your life and the one you desire to lead you this day. Alternatively, you might consider placing a hand over your heart as you pray this prayer.

We come to you with great anticipation and preparation. Open our minds, open our hearts, open ourselves to what you want us to hear and experience today as we read your word.

Scripture Reading

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Ephesians 6:13-17


And with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel (good news) of peace. (Vs 15)

Peace is a lifestyle, a way of life!

There is no story that speaks to peace more than the story of Christmas. The invitation the angel offered the shepherds to make their way to Bethlehem was a message of peace. The Christmas carol Silent Night just exudes peace when we sing it. Christmas is peace. 
In today’s Bible reading, peace is a key part of the armor of God. When we also discover that Ephesians begins with a salutation of peace and then ends with a benediction of peace, we are reminded how important peace is to following Jesus Christ. Peace is not just a blessing in life, it is the foundation for our very existence, the way we live and serve God. Without peace we can become self-obsessed. With peace, we can actually live the selfless life disciples are supposed to live. 

We live in a world that seems dedicated to producing anxiety and fear.
Peace is a lifestyle, something we learn, a way of life!
Many of us make the mistake of thinking that if everything is right with our world then we will have peace. The Biblical truth is that when it is right with our soul, it is well with our relationship with God, then we have peace.

Ask God for peace
Trust that God’s love for us is as real as God is. 
Know that peace cannot come from the world, but from a relationship with the creator of the world. 
The treasure of that relationships is not that God belongs to us, but that we belong to God.
Christmas is not God giving us Jesus, but the incarnational way God gives us to a savior. 

This is peace. 

Closing Prayer

When you are finished with your time of reflection, close out this time with this prayer.

Lord, Make advent real in our hearts.
Never have we needed Your joy and peace more than now.
Thank You for the gift of Jesus, our Immanuel, the Word made flesh.

Lord, we need Your peace and joy. We know that peace on earth can only come when hearts find peace with You. You are still our Joy. You are still our Peace. And we still celebrate You as Lord—this Christmas and always.

The First 15

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