Thursday, December 17, 2009

Joy To The World

Joy to the World, The Lord is come...Those words by Issac Watts reflect the angelic message to shepherds faithfully carrying out their menial tasks.

Joy to the World...It blares from digitally enhanced church steeples even as anxious shoppers within its sound trudge from store to store only to be confronted by short-tempered, ill-mannered, and inconsiderate shoppers and shop keepers.

Where is the “Joy” in Christmas? Everywhere one turns he hears, mumbling, grumbling, groaning, and complaining. The oft heard comment, “I just don’t have enough time,” reflects the consternation the Christmas Season brings.

I think it is time to take stock of what Christmas should be all about. It should be a time of willing self-sacrifice, not grudging dutiful drudgery. It should reflect the willing sacrifice Jesus Christ made when He left the glories of heaven to be born as a vulnerable human being during a time of poverty and political oppression, so that He could offer Himself a sacrifice for the sin of the world.

Should we approach the purchase of gifts as an opportunity to express our love and appreciation of those for whom the gifts are intended, we might be less frustrated in our search. Those people with whom we deal are simply obstacles placed there by the enemy to challenge our resolve to act in Christ-like love to those who serve us in our pursuits.

The driver who swerves into the parking place ahead of you, the shopper whose self-centered dash upends your load of packages, the clerk whose aching feet and splitting headache override her normally courteous behavior, and the myriad of others you encounter are simply opportunities to demonstrate that the Angels were not wrong. They did bring good tidings of great joy, and Issac Watts is correct, we can have joy.

Joy which is dependent upon perfect external conditions is not really joy at all. Joy is an expression of an internal condition which naturally flows from an ongoing and growing personal relationship with Jesus Christ.


From "A Word For Living" by Mike Rasberry

© 2009 Mike Rasberry

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mike, I have forwarded your letter to some of my friends in the hope that they will read it to their teenage children. Kind Regards. From Brian.