Joy.

Good news! When is the last time you heard good news?

Luke 2:8-20
“In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah,[a] the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host,[b] praising God and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”[c]
15 
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. 17 When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

God chose the shepherds to tell Mary about the baby. What does this say about God? What does this say about the shepherds?  Can God use you to tell some good news?

 

Love.

Think of a time when you could feel God’s love for you, through a friend, scripture or circumstance.

Isaiah 40:11 talks about God taking care of the flock like a shepherd, feeding us, carrying us, and protecting us.

“He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.”

Does this image of God allow you to love God more?

Remember you are a child of God who will not leave you or forsake you, but carry you gently in his arms.

Peace

Give peace a chance…

Let there be peace on earth….

I’ve got peace like a river….

We talk about peace like it’s some insurmountable event that is never going to happen. I think it is an individual thing. Something we each have to create. or live out. I have to admit, some mornings I am not very peaceful. It is not at the top of my to-do list. But it’s not going to be realized unless we take it off our “token answer” list and put it on our daily to-do list.

Numbers 6:24-26

The Lord bless you and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.

Isaiah 9:6

For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Hope Peace Love Joy

Advent has begun, a season of waiting for the Christ child to be born. We count down the days in many ways, with calendars, songs, nativity scenes, or candles. In our church, we focus on the four candles, signifying Hope, Peace, Love, and Joy.

Hope is the feeling that Mary cherished after finding out that she would be delivering the Messiah to a world that had been waiting.

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.
    Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.
Read through Luke 1:26-56

What have you been waiting for?