“Good News of Great Joy,” Day 23: Unbridled Joy

booklet_coverI recently created a 26-day Advent devotional booklet for my church called “Good News of Great Joy.” I will be posting a devotional from it each day between now and Christmas day. Enjoy!

Scripture: Luke 2:8-15

When I was a kid growing up, my father had two jobs related to trimming the Christmas tree. First, he hauled it into the garage, sawed the bottom of the trunk off, and fit it into the tree stand. Next, he untangled the Christmas tree lights and tested the light bulbs. These were the days when lights were wired in “series,” which meant that if just one bulb was out, the entire strand didn’t work. So Dad had to go bulb by bulb, testing each one: untangling and testing, untangling and testing, untangling and testing.

A frustrating job! And Dad used some colorful language to describe it!

But Dad’s short temper and salty language didn’t bother us kids in the least. In fact, we knew that Christmas was coming soon when Dad was cursing about Christmas tree lights!

As much as I love Christmas as an adult, I miss that feeling of pure, unbridled joy that I couldn’t contain when I was a kid at Christmastime. How about you?

I think this is the kind of joy that the angels have in today’s scripture.

After one angel makes the announcement to the shepherds abiding in the field, he’s joined by what Luke calls a “great assembly of the heavenly forces,” who are shouting, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!” I don’t think these angels rehearsed this song in some kind of heavenly choir practice before joining in this heavenly song. I think it was a spontaneous outburst, as if these angels were so happy they couldn’t contain their joy! They had to appear out of heaven to sing God’s praises for sending his Son!

When was the last time you were so happy you just couldn’t hold it in? What if our own worship was like that? What prevents our worship from being like that?


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