Thursday, December 11, 2008

The gift of Joy.

Today I ventured into the realm of Christmas shopping.  It did not at all appear joyful.  AT. ALL.

This is what I saw:
  • mom's annoyed with other mom's for blocking the aisle with their cart.
  • Clerks zoned out but no doubt counting down until closing time in their heads.
  • full parking lots.
  • empty facial expressions.
I read a few cards about Santa, Frosty, and Christmas Joy and Cheer.  But as I walked through I could only help but notice, that in 30 years of life, the Joy of Christmas didn't show up in a stocking, a gift from santa, or mom and dad.  Sure, there were moments of happiness, my parents were good gift givers...

But Joy.  Joy is so much more than a feeling of happiness.  Joy is something that is woven within us, that is inexplainable really, and is not as temporary and fleeting as happiness.  Joy cannot come from a gift, from wealth, from things.  I have discovered in my own life that joy is rooted in something far greater than material things.  Joy is hope for eternity discovered and lived out to the fullest.  Joy is forgiveness given and received.  Joy is love unhindered and indescribable.  Joy is an intangible gift from God that is to be treasured.

Joy is for the receiving, and it is freely given, but so many of us miss out on it because we are walking through store aisles on rainy thursday nights looking for that perfect gift.  Joy doesn't come wrapped in a pretty package, but rather it comes wrapped in a manger, from the heart of a Father to His children.




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