GET TOGETHER- JOY TO THE WORLD
Lu 2:8-11¶ Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Well one of my favorite times of the year is here. It is a time when many Christians focus on, celebrate and give special significance to the Virgin Birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As I was listening to the Holy Spirit for direction on this week’s Get Together in my spirit, I heard the words from that great Hymn Joy to the World.
It would be nice if I could say that we are now entering a time of year where everything was perfect. But I know that is not true. In our family we have had love ones to go to Heaven during this time of year. As a Pastor I have been with other families when they have experienced that, or their first Christmas without someone that they loved. And while we rejoiced for those that had passed away being in Heaven we missed them and still do at this time of the year.
There are currently wars going on all over the world where there is mass loss of human life. We have also seen several serious natural disasters in our own country that people are still recovering from. Christians in many places are imprisoned for their faith. Some people have loved ones that are incarcerated. Some people have just been laid off from their jobs. I could go on and on about how Christmas is not a time in which there are no challenging situations. But I would like to share with you that because the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth, born of a virgin, lived, died for the atonement for our sins, rose from the dead, and poured out the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost we can rejoice in all situations and circumstances.
The Greek term for joy that the Bible uses for joy in the above passage is chara, khar-ah’. It can mean a state of joy and gladness. It can also mean that which is cause for joy and gladness.
The joy that Jesus the Savior of the world brings is that no matter whether we are experiencing something tough in our lives or whether we are in a season where we are not experiencing some of those things we can rejoice. We can rejoice that we serve a Savior that has conquered death, hell, and the grave! We can rejoice that we serve a Savior that is saving the souls of men and women and delivering them from sinful lifestyles. We can rejoice that Jesus still heals people today. We can rejoice that although we may not remember what we got for Christmas a few years ago we can remember the day that we met the Savior of the world! We can rejoice that He is still filling people with the Holy Spirit today. We can rejoice that He is still answering prayers today. Now that is glad tidings of great joy! I could make a lot longer list of things that we can rejoice about than I could the adverse things that I mentioned early.
I am hearing the refrain from another great hymn now; O Come O Come Emanuel :
Rejoice! Rejoice! Immanuel
shall come to you, O Israel.
After that I thought that this verse from the same song would give us reason to rejoice in this season no matter what the circumstance.
O come, O Bright and Morning Star,
and bring us comfort from afar!
Dispel the shadows of the night
and turn our darkness into light.
Let Us Pray
Lord Jesus as we move into this special season help us to worship You and experience You in such a way that no matter the situation, or circumstance we can rejoice remembering the words that You spoke while you were here on this earth Joh 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”. We rejoice in that promise O King of Glory! We give You praise Blessed Messiah, Living Word!
In Jesus Name
Please keep J.J.’s dad in your prayers. He had a heart attack on Thanksgiving night. He is at home recovering. Also keep her mom in your prayers as she is still recovering from a fall back in September.