Jesus Keeps Joy Bells Ringing In Our Soul

“When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when … they saw the young child with Mary his mother, they fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.” Matthew 2:11

During the Christmas season, we gather joyously with family and friends from the youngest to the oldest and with those who have traveled from near and far to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Everywhere churches are filled with Christians reading Isaiah’s prophecy of the birth of Emmanuel (God with us) and the New Testament fulfillment in the birth of Jesus Christ. Mathew 1:23 Traditionally this great celebration highlights relationships and is reminiscent of the baby Jesus, Mary and the wise men in that it reveals the story of faith accompanying life at every age.  

As I ponder upon this and their joy, I am also drawn to the difficulties they faced.  I also become more aware that although in life each of us may travel a road upon which there may be many dangers, toils and snares, as we go along the path of faith, we walk towards the promise that Jesus who saves, has come to give us life more abundantly and has prayed for our joy to be full.  Therefore, you see, even though the wise men’s journey through the dark night had just begun, they rejoiced because they knew our Savior Jesus, was before them. So it was that as the heavens declared the glory of God and the skies proclaimed the work of his hands, God made known to them the path of life. In His presence, they experienced fullness of joy. Only Jesus can keep joy bells ringing in our soul.

To be guided by the light of the world can lead to an encounter with Christ that has the ability to expand the sphere of our existence in a way that increases our connection with Him and relationship to one another. Just as with the birth of Jesus, Mary and the wise men each had an opportunity to welcome and spread the gift of heaven; the joy of the Lord through living on earth. This is what our gifts and gatherings are intended to produce!  In fact, our custom of giving Christmas gifts is actually hinged in the wise men’s joy of bringing gifts to Jesus. But their gifts were to the Lord, it was their expression of worship. This Christmas think upon this… Their desire was to meet Jesus and any encounter with Christ has an ability to produce worship. If we allow our acceptance, knowledge and understanding of Him to grow and flow from our head to our heart, joy bells will ring in our souls too.  

 May this be a very Merry Christmas for each of us where in we give gifts of, surrender and worship to Jesus who keeps the joy bells ringing in our soul.                 

Rev. Von Crigler

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