Focal Passage: Psalm 95:1-3; Luke 2:4-14
Sometimes, joy seems so hard to come by – a scarce resource indeed. Technological advances have given us access to every discouraging thing in any part of the world and at any time. Our access to world news is right in the palm of our hand. This is often in addition to the difficulties in our personal lives. How can we possess joy when there is so much to be sad about? Have we seen and experienced too much to be joyful?
Joy was never meant to be found in a particular set of circumstances or an easy life. It isn’t found in a good news cycle or in a financial windfall. In fact, true joy can only be found in the God of our salvation. God’s salvation transcends any circumstance or emotion we may face. This life can never satisfy us. We live in a broken world that is aching with the effects of sin. This is why Jesus came.
God has chosen to redeem the world through Jesus Christ. He was born into the world as a baby to live among us and die for our sin. This act of God putting on flesh and coming to earth is what we call the incarnation. Though the incarnation happened over 2,000 years ago, it is still cause for boundless joy today. Luke says that the joy of Christ’s birth would be to all people. That includes us! God’s salvation through Jesus has reached us throughout time and place. We can rejoice that God loves us so much, He decided to bring us back to Himself through Christ’s birth and eventually His death and resurrection.
God is worthy of our praise because He is the one who gives us joy through His salvation. We receive this salvation as a gift from God through faith in Jesus Christ. We know that, whatever we face, our salvation is secure and unshakable. In Him, we have joy to carry us for the rest of our lives and into an eternity in God’s presence.