“I haven’t found the peace of Christmas yet,” my mother announced one Christmas over 20 years ago. She was in her eighties and still full of vim and vigor, visiting me from Ohio.
We were decorating my Christmas tree together, and she had been telling me all about the fun social gatherings that she had participated in.
I had never really pondered finding peace at Christmas time before, but I have been searching for it ever since.
It is an elusive thing, this peace of Christmas, especially in a world filled with hate, violence, poverty, and the vicious politics of our country. Mix in the maddening commercialism on television and the Internet, and the result is hardly seasonal serenity.
And so, I wonder as I wander through traffic and crowds and stores, if I will ever find the peace of Christmas. And yet, miraculously, unexpectedly, I do.
Sometimes it comes in the farmer’s fragrant field where we cut down our Christmas tree. Sometimes it comes in the faces of those seeking food at the local food pantry. Sometimes it comes in a musical moment with young or old performing carols. Often it comes in the stillness of prayer.
“Did you find the peace of Christmas?” my mother and I continued to ask each other over the years until death did us part. And we did.
Maybe, no matter what your faith or belief, you too are seeking peace in the song of your soul this busy holiday season. I hope you find it too.
For then, perhaps in these darkened days of winter, the light of peace can be the gift we give each other.
PHOTO CREDIT: MARNIE O. MAMMINGA