If I say Joy in our house you can be sure that even the second smallest person will burst into song – because let’s face it “Joy to the World” is one of those all time favorite Christmas Carols.
This is a madly busy time of year: The weeks of preparation, decorating, shopping for the perfect gift, planning to make gifts that take years instead of hours. Not to mention all the feasting and food preparation. And all the extra events we are called to attend – not all of them we want to attend, many of them are things we do because “we have to” rather than because we want to. The pressure of getting things perfect and the overwhelming-ness of getting everything done on time, the late nights to cope with the mad to-do lists… and coping with people you don’t normally see all year but now you must “because it’s Christmas” can make us feel as if the joy has quite literally washed away…
Even if you love and adore everything about Christmas, and you have got your Christmas traditions down to a smooth oiled machine and the whole event is perfect right down to the left-over lunch on Boxing Day… You may feel somewhat “peopled-out, tired-out and stressed out.” In fact exceedingly joy-less when it is all over.
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit
And there in lies the truth, we are so easily distracted by things that don’t matter and forget that the reason we are celebrating this joyous event is quite simply because the birth of Jesus is the most joyful event. Before they had even met him the wise men were overjoyed (Matthew 2:10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.) In fact, before he was even born, for example when Mary visited Elizabeth, (Luke 1:44 As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy) Jesus caused others to leap for joy.
And what about us you might ask… We have joy as a fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.) Joy is not just a happy feeling it is a spontaneous delight, which does not come from the trappings of stuff and events. Really to maintain the joy in our lives we need to nurture and grow the Fruits of the Spirit in our hearts.
And just because its a Give Away Week here comes our GiveAway. As usual I have to thank Christian Book Discounters who kindly supplied the books for this GiveAway…
The GiveAway works in the usual way, comment before the end of this coming Friday, 01 January 2010, and I will draw and publish the winner next week on Sunday! – I won’t respond to your comments as I do on our other posts because I don’t want to be included in our own giveaway.
Our GiveAway Books are open to everyone: If you have won a GiveAway before never fear – enter away. If you live on the far side of the world – enter away. Postage takes forever from here but eventually it should get to you!
Good luck and get commenting!