Advent candle arrangement courtesy Bernadette.
This week we have been considering the joy of Advent. Where have you found joy this week? What carol speaks to you of Advent joy? I'm sure you have a favourite. I can think of none better or more fitting for today than Isaac Waats' words from 1791,
Joy to the world! the Lord is come;
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare him room,
And heaven and nature sing.
This is what Advent is about: preparing room in our hearts for Jesus. In a very real sense, we do this every day. Every day is a choice between letting the worries of life crowd Jesus out, or sweeping those away to make room for him anew.
Heidelberg Catechism 58 reminds us that "even as I already now experience in my heart the beginning of eternal joy," it is incomperable to that which we shall one day know. If that is the case, let us make a grand beginning and experience the fullness of joy which Jesus, and Jesus alone, offers us—today, this Christmas, and every day!
When it comes to finding Christmas joy, perhaps I have an advantage. I'm been involved this week with services of worship for our Advent worship, Advent worship with our local ministerial, and our Christmas worship. All of these involve songs of joy and God-given reasons for joy. I hope that you will avail yourselves of these and many other times of worship. I hope that you take in Advent worship from your local church, a church across the continent, and a church on the other side of the world. For the first time ever, we have opportunity to do so.
And I pray that you will find, in the busy times and the times of solitude, Jesus our highest joy, the greatest gift, our sufficiency.
"Lord, you are our highest joy. You give us so many reasons for joy. May they all point us back to you."
PS - Please see the News section of this website for extra opportunities for worship this Advent and Christmas season.