It was December 25, 1914. In the book titled Christmas Truce, that day was called “The most famous truce in military history.” British and German troops put down their firearms and peacefully celebrated Christmas together between the trenches. A quote from Private Oswald Tilly, a British infantry soldier, in a letter to his parents recounts the remarkable day. “Just you think that while you were eating turkey, etc., I was out talking and shaking hands with the very men I had been trying to kill a few hours before!” It is said the Generals and high command officers were shocked at what happened there on the battlefield. Their diaries expressed anxiety because they felt that this type of bizarre behavior could quell their troops’ willingness to fight. No wonder. They witnessed their soldiers exchanging gifts, sharing addresses and playing soccer together. As recorded in history, the sentiment of the Angels of Luke 2, who called out “Peace on earth,” overshadowed the fighting and killing for 24 hours. Sadly, in the aftermath of World War I, eight million soldiers and an estimated twelve million civilians died.
Peace on earth has been proven to be out of the reach of mere mortals. It is the Divine Savior of the world who came down from heaven to earth that first Christmas day that brings lasting peace. I pray that both you and your family will celebrate Christmas 2017 with the deepest gratitude for the Savior who came to earth to die for our sins.