The Christmas Truce

“Do whatever you do with the thought and peace of Christ. This Christmas behold Christ born anew in the beauty of all Nature, in your awakened wisdom, in everything which wears true beauty, and in everybody who saturates himself with the fragrance of Christ’s qualities.”

– Master Inner Culture magazine, December 1932

In the Bible the story of Christmas begins with the shepherds, watching over their sheep through the night. When suddenly a normal winter night became a night they would never forget, and neither will we. The Bible tells us in exquisite language what happened.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. “And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” Luke 2:9–11, 13–14o

Every year we remember this beautiful message and feel the power of that first Christmas. We enjoy the music and the traditions it has inspired, and we celebrate and share the spirit of it with family and friends, and with a feeling of goodwill to everyone.

There is a beautiful story from World War I, that the first Christmas in 1914, soldiers on both sides stopped fighting on Christmas eve. That winter night conditions in the trenches must have been horrific; freezing, wet and terrifying. You can imagine the thoughts of those young men, far from home and family, not knowing when or if they would ever see them again.

An English soldier wrote in a letter home that he and his comrades heard the German soldiers singing Silent Night, then the British soldiers joined the singing, they sang in their own languages but were united by their shared love of a beautiful and beloved German Christmas carol.

The next day, Christmas Day, the truce continued with the soldiers on both sides, leaving their trenches and exchanging greetings and giving presents to each other. They played football in no man’s land, the area between the British and German trenches.

The most amazing part of this story is that this was not an isolated event. The spontaneous truce happened up and down the western front, in areas miles apart from each other. The Christmas spirit changed, for a short while at least, the cruel and brutal momentum of one of the worst conflicts the world has ever known. The power of God’s love and peace entered hearts that a day before had been intent on killing each other, the next day the war continued.

The Christmas TruceThroughout the Christmas season this year, remember the extraordinary Christmas truce of 1914. Pray that the grace of Christmas, touch and transform all hearts, in that same miraculous way. Ask yourself what you can do to be a channel of peace and good will to all, and to continue doing so long after Christmas is over.

God needs soldiers to go to battle with the darkness in the world. That darkness has to be fought in every heart, replacing hatred with love, sorrow with joy, and war with peace. The battlefield is our life, the trenches are our daily routines, how can we expect the world to ever change if we do not.

The message of Christmas is far too precious a gift to think about for only a short time every year. Our world and each of our lives need this gift now more than ever.

May the blessings of Christmas be with us always and may we strive to give Christmas blessings to everyone we encounter throughout the  days, weeks, months and years of our lives.

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The Christmas Truce

One Comment

  1. My hope is for a better world, climat and Love for each other and for Christmas feelings over the whole year.

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