There is something about the name, Jesus. The love God’s only begotten son has for us causes us to show love under the most extraordinary circumstances.
You’ve heard it said that “War is Hell”. That statement is most true to those who have been in a real war. The kind of war with bullets and bombs. The war where real bodies are lying dead all around you. That kind of war is hell!
Can you imagine two armies trying to destroy each other mercilessly over several months with casualties in the hundreds of thousands actually taking time out to celebrate a holiday, together??? It was totally unplanned but a spontaneous reaction to what? Which holiday would cause a man to stop shooting his enemy? Certainly not Halloween! It was Christmas.
The year was 1914. World War I was in full swing with British and German soldiers in Ypres, Belgium, in the trenches killing each other. Dead bodies in the trenches alongside the fighting men. Dead bodies in the gap between both trenches. Then, as Christmas approaches, the shooting slows and then stops. Silence. Then imagine hearing a song. I can imagine the soldiers dismissing this as simply their minds playing tricks on them. Then they hear it again, yes a song being sung on the other side. Yes, the language is different, but the tune…yes, you know that tune. It’s Silent Night! Your heart melts. First, you begin to hum along and then your heart begins to sing along. Then you see on the other side lights that remind you of something…. What??? Christmas lights?!
There is something about the name of Jesus.
To truly comprehend the power of that event, you would have to imagine how tragic and devastating trench fighting was on 1914. You would have to imagine sleeping, eating, and defacating in a ditch for days on end with no hope of seeing your family. It was more likely you would be killed or maimed before leaving that trench. You likely watched your friend get killed right next to you. It is likely that his body was right where he died. You were scared and angry at the same time and yet, that tune. Then an invitation to visit and celebrate Christmas comes from your enemy. A truce. Jesus overcomes the trenches. Wow. He overcame the hurt and the anger and the fear. Amazing. It was God’s amazing grace that gave these men this moment.
Can you hear the song while your in “the trenches”?