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Joy to the World


Week 3

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Our third Advent Candle lit this season is JOY TO THE WORLD

So much joy surrounding the  birth of Jesus," exceeding great joy”   Matt 2:10  "You will have joy and gladness and many will rejoice at His birth”Luke 1:18,
"The baby leaped with joy in the womb” Luke 1:44 “I bring you good news of great joy” Luke 2:20  
Yet in Christmas's without our children its difficult to find any joy let alone exceeding great joy!  Is joy different than happiness? Some say they are but the void of both feels the same to me.
James, Jesus half brother, instructs us to" Count it all joy when you encounter various trials knowing that the testing of your faith brings endurance and endurance makes us complete lacking nothing!”
All joy that's right up there with exceeding great joy something we have to “count”.  Counting implies head knowledge not heart knowledge.  I don’t feel joy this Christmas missing my child and just having my husband diagnosed with cancer but I do know from past experience the these type of trials build my patience, endurance and faith and make me a more complete, stronger person.  
A lot of the true joy I have found in life is when I’ve seen personal growth in myself and here is another opportunity! 
Lifting a 100 lb weight starts with 5 lbs than 10 lbs etc .  These trials started small in my life, I’ve been strengthened with each one as i trembling pick it up and experience the next level of strengthening.  Now the 100 lb weight!!  Will I choose to pick it up and become more complete or lay in the gym broken maybe a little of both today.
Jesus the man of sorrows accounted with Grief says “My joy I give to you”  when I have none I will take His and survive under the heavy weight of my “no joy” day. 
Joy to the World the Lord has come let earth receive her king!

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