Gift of Joy
By Kathy Willis
You won’t find joy gift-wrapped and under the Christmas tree, but it is a gift indeed. Without the birth of Christ which we celebrate at Christmas, there would be no authentic joy. There might be temporary bursts of happiness, controlled by surrounding circumstances, but there would not be joy.
Joy can only come from the One who guarantees salvation, because with that, there is eternal peace of mind. When Christ becomes real in our lives, we begin to pick up His mannerisms, and if Christ was anything, He was joyful. It is one of those character traits I’m most thankful for receiving. The Holy Spirit living in me whispers joy to my heart and my mind when the outside world seems to be yelling negativity to me.
In times of crisis and conflict, joy produces a calm that cannot be explained. It allows a person to be more than just content, but actually excited about living life “out loud.” Joy gives its recipient an assurance that any unpleasant circumstance is only a temporary inconvenience that can be overcome victoriously.
The Christmas carol, “Joy to the world, the Lord is come!” is so accurate. Joy came to the world in the form of the baby Jesus. Anything before that time was just an anticipation of the Christ Child’s appearance. We who live after His birth get the full picture—the gift of grace and mercy—rather than having to offer our own sin sacrifices like God’s people did in the Old Testament. Christ’s life and death give us the completion of God’s gift to us, His beloved. How can we not be joyful, when we consider this?
AUTHOR QUOTE: Are you overwhelmed with parties, guest lists, gift wrapping, and tinsel this season? Or are you overcome with joy?
“These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full,” John 15:11 KJV.
Today’s devotion is by Kathy Carlton Willis, wife to Russ, pastor’s wife to many, author, editor, publicist and speaker. Kathy Carlton Willis Communications encompasses her many passions. Learn more at: http://kcwcomm.blogspot.com/ or http://www.kathycarltonwillis.com/.