Third Sunday of Advent.
The third candle symbolizes joy.
Anybody have any grand ideas for this one? Years ago, my dear friend [then Pastor] Nathan explained that joy comes internally, externally, and always from God. Yet what about those moments, like this moment, where joy is a little harder to come by? Harder to find? Sometimes it is just more of a struggle, and we feel like we spend so much time looking for and grasping at hope and peace that seeking joy just feels more like a chore. I have written several times on this blog about actively trying to live my life one of joy. And how hard it is. When joy, the beautiful return for waiting for and the gift of Christ, should be so simple. Do you have any ideas? I don’t really know what to think about joy today because I am waiting, it feels like everyone is waiting, for the joyous part of this season. Amidst the haste of tasks we associate with the season and busyness of trying to connect with loved ones in heartfelt, meaningful ways…we pressure ourselves to find joy. As we focus on the desire for healing and hope and peace and then – that the suffocating, intoxicating, brilliant thing of joy will comes to overwhelm them all. Us all. And we didn’t have to really do anything at all.
Where does your joy come from? …What fills you? [story.donald miller]
And personally, I do not mean simply waiting for the joy of Friday, December 20 – when school is out! What a blessed relief that day will be, the joy in the quiet breaths I can take during a few weeks away; a time with my family that I long for 11.5 months of the rest of the year.
Calgary has grown cold, and the blustery days of snow have produced some magic in the prettiness of white. And it’s so very quiet out there tonight, a first in awhile, perhaps here to settle us in for the last full week of anticipating this gift.
grace and peace,
[adapted from d.08]