Blog – 12-6-17

Joy, a dominant theme of the Christmas season. There are beautiful signs with the word joy all around. Glitter-filled Christmas decorations proclaim Joy to the World. Joy is everywhere.

But is it in your heart?

For many of us, the joy of the season can be overshadowed by the craziness we get wrapped up in. We feel overwhelmed by our to-do lists, financially strapped by our shopping lists, worn out from decorating and baking, and pooped out by unusually demanding schedules. The holidays are wonderful, but they are, quite simply, a lot.

Sometimes amidst all the hustle and bustle of the season, joy is the thing that goes missing.

Stress strangles our joy.

I’ve learned something very important this past year. Joy, happiness, peace, love…they are all choices. They are feelings, I know, but sometimes we have to make a very intentional choice to feel joy, peace, or love, even when we naturally don’t feel it at all.

We don’t have to wait for spontaneous waves of good tidings and happiness to wash over us. We can choose to find joy in the simple things.

As I write this, I find joy in simple things like the smell of the new candle I just received from a friend that makes my office smell like chestnuts and warm vanilla. I find joy in the twinkle of the lights all around my house (and there are LOTS of them!). I find joy in the warm cup of tea I’m enjoying in my new Christmas mug. I feel at peace as I take a slow, deep breath.

And the most wonderful, authentic, awe-inducing joy of all comes in the realization of what all this rushing around is for. Christ came at Christmas to bring us salvation. God literally came to earth to rescue us from ourselves. He came to make us new.

Because of that night long ago in Bethlehem, we get to spend eternity in eternal joy.

Truth is, God wants to spend eternity with you. With YOU!

As Christians, that should be the greatest source of our joy.

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.
Psalm 94:19

I know some of you are feeling anxious and overwhelmed, your heart is running low on joy. I urge you, don’t let the stress you’re feeling strangle your joy. Don’t let joy be the thing that’s missing this holiday season. Choose today to be intentional about finding that joy.

I pray that you will take this moment, right here right now, to stop and intentionally find that joy. It’s there, my friend!

Let joy wash over you as you remember that Christmas means you get to spend eternity in eternal joy.

Let your heart be open to the greatest gift of the season, let your heart be open to joy!

Hugs and love,



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