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The Christmas season can be the most wonderful time of the year for some, and the most stressful or contentious for others. We hear Christmas songs about ‘peace and goodwill to men,’ but sometimes those can seem like concepts far removed from our own personal situations. As Christians though, we know that through Jesus and His victory over death we have peace with God (Romans 5:1). We know that Jesus gives us the peace of God.
Jesus made it clear that in this life we would face opposition and perhaps, even persecution. As the world continues to polarize around divisive issues, we can expect to find others at odds with our belief in God’s word as final authority. So we should not be surprised if we find there are times we have to deal with those who are enemies.
Jesus gives us some clues in His teachings on how we should be making peace. Any loving actions and words that help overcome enmity between us and others is a good start. And to be more specific, we are to pray for those who persecute us. In order to pray for God to bless our enemies we (super)naturally need to walk in forgiveness and not hold on to any offenses. As Paul tells us we are to, “be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you” (Eph. 4:32).