Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Advent - Day 19

Joy – Isaiah 9:2-7
Thursday, December 18

Imagine for a moment that you and I are engaged in a word association exercise. You say “joy,” and I name occasions of joy that come to mind. Immediately I think of my wedding day; today, the anniversary of our son and his wife; getting a phone call from my husband saying he was on his way home from Vietnam; holding each of our children for the first time; every time a grandchild says, I love you. Happiness may be fleeting, but occasions such as these brought, and continue to bring, the deep, exhilarating, satisfying, lasting emotion of joy.

Joy is definitely a word associated with Christmas. Joy to the world, the Lord is come.
The angel told the shepherds not to be afraid for, I bring you news of great joy that will be for all people. Christ’s coming was an occasion of joy.

But, don’t confuse happiness with joy. Both might be described as feelings of elation, but happiness depends on circumstances and joy may be felt in spite of circumstances. Hope brings joy and is a direct result of a heart that trusts in God and God’s unfailing love.

Food for thought: The emotion of Isaiah 9:2-7 is one of joy. Reread it. This time read it aloud and with great joy.

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