Monday, November 29

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2021 Advent Devotional: In the Midst of Changing Ways – Many Gifts, One Spirit

Week 1: The Gift of Joy

Scripture: 1 Thessalonians 3:9 – “How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy that we feel before our God because of you.”

Reflector: Rev. Michael Mather

Photo by Taylor Heery on Unsplash

It seems strange to be talking about joy in the midst of a pandemic. Yet here we are. Jesus exemplified joy all the time (in fact it got him in a whole lot of trouble, with his disciples and with the political and religious authorities). Advent is often talked of as “the season of joy.” What makes it joyful is our ability to see and welcome God’s abundance all around us, in the most surprising places.

In the midst of holiday celebrations and concerts, I hope we will pause and look around to see the gifts that are so often overlooked in the very young, the very old, the poor, and those without a place to lay their heads. Why? Because THAT is where we will find joy.

Prayer: O God, you turn our mourning into dancing. You have taken off our sackcloth and clothed us with joy. May our spirits be ever tuned to your spirit to know joy even in difficult days. Amen.