November 16, 2022


Numbers 6:24-26  “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” (NIV)

The Hebrew word, shalom, wishes (either coming or going) a state of wholeness, completeness, or unity on another. It may even include reconciliation. The ‘peace’ indicated by Shalom can be between us and God, one another, or both.  

As we approach the holiday season, specifically Thanksgiving, many Christians also approach the end of the church year, closing the liturgical church year with ‘Christ the King Sunday’ to begin a new church year with the season of Advent. It’s a great time to think of all that shalom means and how it’s meaning can infuse our lives and gatherings this holiday season.  

Christ Jesus completed the work of reconciliation for us by dying on a cross to pay for our sins. In doing so He made a way for us to be united once again with God and with others through forgiveness. As we receive His forgiveness, we also experience His peace as He brings us closer and closer to a state of wholeness, completeness, and unity as imitators of Christ. Jesus Christ, our King, unites all believers in His kingdom of grace and joins us together as members of His eternal family.

Perhaps this holiday season our earthly gatherings can also be times of unification and reconciliation, bringing us to a greater state of Unknown 2wholeness as individuals and with our families and friends, if for no other reason than that our King has done so for us! Shalom.

Reflection:  How can your holiday season bless another with shalom? What is one intentional thing you can do this holiday season to avoid over-commitment, create margin, and seek His peace?

Dear God, thank you for the reconciliation I have with You through Christ Jesus my Lord. Thank you for Your peace. Please help me to extend Your grace and peace through reconciliation with others this holiday season.

Shawn Maassel, Huntingtown, MD

Shawn MaasselShawn began taking Body & Soul® classes as a student in 1990 after her first child was born. Years later, after a move and transition to full-time church work, she became a Body & Soul® instructor in order to bring the ministry and classes to her new church. She has been leading classes since 2003 in Huntingtown, Maryland and enjoys being part of Body & Soul’s® Spiritual Impact Team. Shawn and her husband have three grown children and two grandsons across the country.