The Advent Season: Joy

ISAIAH 49:13
Sing for joy, O heavens! Rejoice, O earth! Burst into song, O mountains! For the Lord has comforted his people and will have compassion on them in their suffering.

In the third week of Advent, we celebrate Joy. We rejoice with excitement and expectation, waiting and anticipating the coming of Christ.

The Joy of the Christmas season comes from a deep and sacred place, like an underground river, constant and steady. This kind of joy is not based on our circumstance, or swayed by emotion.

Joy is an ever-present gift that we are invited to tap into. Not only around Christmastime, but throughout the year.

The holiday season is difficult for many people to find Joy. Maybe they are reminded of loved ones lost or they reflect on the past year and are not happy with their situation.

How can you be joyful when you feel sad, depressed, or discouraged?

As believers, we have so much to celebrate. We have the joy of knowing that Christ has come, and fulfilled every prophecy spoken about Him. We can also look forward to his second coming, knowing that He keeps every promise, and will make all things right.

Philippians 4:4-7 (ESV) says ...
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to
God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

There are many mentions of Joy in Christmas songs as well. Here are some lyrics to the song,

“Joy To The World (Unspeakable Joy)” by Chris Tomlin.

“Joy, unspeakable joy An overflowing well No tongue can tell Joy, unspeakable joy Rises in my soul, Never lets me go”

Prayer for this week:
Dear Lord, teach me to rejoice in all circumstances, and to carry your joy deep in my heart throughout the year. Fill me with your overflowing joy, and allow it to spill over into the lives of those I meet this week. As we celebrate the joy of your coming, we rejoice that you have come to set us free from discouragement and sadness. May our lives reflect that joy in all things. Amen.