JOY is a Suddenly kind of thing. I don’t think I have ever heard someone say, I am starting to get early feelings that may or may not lead to joy. Joy is so Sudden it often takes your whole body by surprise. JOY is an uncontrollable. We squeal, shout, cheer, jump, wave our hands in funny ways. We laugh out loud.
When we are joyful…Our eyes light up, our heart starts beating faster and we breath more shallow and more often. There are measurable physical changes in our bodies.
“That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Saviour—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!” (Luke 1:8-11)
GOOD NEWS and JOYare synonymous. On that first Christmas night, the angels appeared to shepherds on a hill near Bethlehem. Alfred Edersheim, the great 19th-century Jewish-Christian scholar, wrote in his book The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah that the shepherds and the sheep to whom the angels appeared near Bethlehem were no ordinary shepherds and sheep.
The sheep were those bound for the temple sacrifices. The shepherds were outcasts because of their necessary isolation from religious ordinances. It was a Suddenly event when the angels appeared to them—the doomed and the outcast.
How good is the good news to those who are doomed and outcast? It is the kind of news that brings JOY. Christmas means we have a Savior. Christmas is the fulfillment of true Hope, Peace, Love and Joy.
Join us on Dec. 24th for a special Candle lit Service to celebrate what Christmas means for every person in every nation.