But what if you don’t feel so joyful this Christmas season?
- Many people struggle during the holidays for a multitude of reasons.
- Some have lost a loved one and this is their first or second Christmas without them.
- Some have some other difficult memory attached to the Christmas season.
- Perhaps you don’t have money to purchase Christmas gifts for your children or to cook a special meal.
- What if you or a loved one is very ill?
- You might have difficult family members.
What do you do?
- Pretend you have joy that you don’t have?
- Avoid any type of celebration?
- Spend time thinking about all the reasons you don’t want to celebrate?
- Feel sorry for yourself?
Happiness and Joy are very different.
Happiness depends on your circumstances.
But as believers we are able to receive joy from Christ.
“Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.” John 16:24 ESV
Joy doesn’t have to be expressed by being bubbly and excited.
“Who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross.” Hebrews 12:2.
Joy is a deep down feeling that the Lord is in control. It’s knowing that any joy you might have comes from Him, not your circumstances.
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm 16:11 ESV
“And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” Luke 2:10 ESV
Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee
Henry J. van Dyke, 1907
Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee,
God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flow’rs before Thee,
Op’ning to the sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness;
Drive the dark of doubt away;
Giver of immortal gladness,
Fill us with the light of day!
All Thy works with joy surround Thee,
Earth and heav’n reflect Thy rays,
Stars and angels sing around Thee,
Center of unbroken praise.
Field and forest, vale and mountain,
Flow’ry meadow, flashing sea,
Singing bird and flowing fountain
Call us to rejoice in Thee.
Thou art giving and forgiving,
Ever blessing, ever blest,
Wellspring of the joy of living,
Ocean depth of happy rest!
Thou our Father, Christ our Brother,
All who live in love are Thine;
Teach us how to love each other,
Lift us to the joy divine.
Mortals, join the happy chorus,
Which the morning stars began;
Father love is reigning o’er us,
Brother love binds man to man.
Ever singing, march we onward,
Victors in the midst of strife,
Joyful music leads us Sunward
In the triumph song of life.
It’s hard to believe that the Christmas season is here once again!
And with it comes the season of giving!
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