Monday, December 15, 2008

No emotion is more connected to
Christmas than joy--the universal
language of an overflowing heart.
As we contemplate Christmas, joy
should be every person's response
to God's great gift.

How do you feel when you give a
special gift to someone you love
deeply? You feel good, right?
What you feel is JOY. But which
is greater? The joy you felt, or
the joy in the heart of the person
who received the gift?

Though we seldom think about it,
there must have been joy in
the heart of the Father when He
gave heaven's most precious gift:
His Son. Angels sang joyfully,
and those who heard the song
rejoiced with exceeding great joy
the kind that goes to the depth
of the soul.

He was a man of sorrows and acquainted
with grief, as foretold by Isaiah;
but while He lived among us, joy was
the strength of Jesus' life. Have
you forgotten that Paul tells us
the "kingdom of God in
the Holy Spirit." (Romans 14:17)
The writer of Hebrews says that "for
the joy set before him [he] endured
the cross. (Heb.12:2)

Twice Isaiah says that our response
to God's redemption should be rejoiceful
and even break forth in joyful singing,
Heres what he said;
"Sing for joy, O heavens, for the LORD
has done this; shout loud, O earth
beneath. Burst into song, you
mountains, you forests and all you
trees, for the LORD has redeemed
Jacob, he displays his glory in Israel."
(Isaiah 44:23)

By receiving the great gift that
brought joy to the heart of the Father,
we can begin to catch the joy that has
been missing in our lives. Joy begins
in the person of Jesus Christ. "But
to all who received him, he gave
the right to become children of God."
(John 1:12) the gigantic secret
of the Christian.

* Eileen Sateriale

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