Duane and Ida Miller have been close friends of ours for more than forty years. In addition to having both earned Ph.D.’s in Theology, the wisdom they have learned from seeking justice and loving mercy into their 80’s shows in the simply wise things they write. These three paragraphs from their annual Christmas letter need to be read by all of us.
It seemed to us that Peace is the most precious gift that we could receive this Christmas and it is the gift that our communities, our nation and the world needs. Recently we ran into this verse from Isaiah 55:12 –
For you shall go out in joy,
and be led back in peace.
We certainly hope you experience great joy in this season whether it is from hearing familiar carols, a special gift, an important relationship or just because you are alive. For then you go out in joy, go about your everyday lives without getting caught up in some conflict, and you come back in peace.
So often we hear something that we believe is wrong and we think we have to jump into the middle of it “to set them straight.” Too often such a response makes us feel immediately better but in the end we have helped make the situation a much bigger deal than it needs to be. If we just quietly said: “I don’t see it the same way that you do” and not feel like we had to defeat the other, perhaps the volume of the conflict and the personal attacks could be lessened. So we hope that you might go out each day with joy, not just in this season but throughout the coming year, and find a way to be led back home in peace!