Isaiah 11:6 – The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. (NIV)
I love old movies, and at this time of year, I get to watch one of my all-time favorites, "The Wizard of Oz". The colours, the music, the story, and the characters all blend together perfectly, and my television screen lights up magically, like a square Christmas tree.
I love the Cowardly Lion, who's afraid of his own shadow. Instead of being King of the Beasts, he is terrified of everything and anyone. It's only when young Dorothy is in danger that his true courage begins to surface to save the day.
In today's traditional Advent verse from Isaiah, we read about a lion lying down beside a calf and a yearling. The lion isn't cowardly or afraid to show his ferocity. He isn't avoiding a conflict or retreating from his natural prey. He is just humbly bowing before the Lord of all creation, the little child who leads him. Christ's powerful presence and holy peace has subdued and pacified the King of the Jungle.
We could all do with that kind of pacifying presence in our hearts and homes, our churches and schools, our land and nations. Peace will come to earth one day when we humbly kneel before Christ our King, setting aside all our defences, defiance, and differences.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, come into our lives this Christmas and let Your holy power make this planet a peaceable kingdom, where all of civilization and creation can kneel before You together in faith, hope, and love. Amen.