Holiday for Joy

I am keeping the holiday week post short, as I am spending time reflecting and dealing with some health issues, but one thing I have been pondering, and I wanted to briefly touch on it here.

I woke up on Christmas Day thinking about this blog and wondering if I should post.  But when I started thinking about what I should write, what I could write about the season, I became overwhelmed with the options.

I know that when I sit down to write a blog and I find my mind a clutter rather than clear, it is not from God.  When I receive something from him it is abundantly clear, and I can’t write fast enough.  So I have very little this week to offer up in terms of content except the following…

People celebrate Christmas for various reasons.  Some celebrate it to commemorate the birth of Jesus.  Some celebrate to the idea of Santa Claus.  Some celebrate to give and receive gifts.  Some celebrate because it is a time to feel good and to be around loved ones while eating excessively!

One thing I see that is consistent in all those reasons is the end product of joy.  For each of those reasons for celebrating the Christmas season there is a need to experience joy for a even a brief time.  As a Christian, I know what Christmas means, but I embrace all those other things I mentioned above as well.  I also marvel at the zeal in which I see people who do not believe as I do express themselves and fully embrace the holiday.

God is ever teaching me about grace in every moment of my life, and in doing so he is schooling me on the by-product, joy. During the Christmas season he has brought some very specific people and situations to my mind that have forced me to focus on whether I am able to give as I should in celebration,  or if I have quit extending grace to certain people because of my frustration with them which has endangered my ability to give with a thankful heart.  If I cannot extend his grace, I cannot give, and if I cannot give, I cannot experience joy.

See, I think the common factor, no matter our reason for celebrating Christmas, is that we want a season of joy.  We want to feel peace and comfort.  We want to laugh and be frivolous with those we love.  I think the difference is that if you believe in the shallow, that is the level at which you will experience joy, and it will last for only a short season.  But if you believe in something more sustaining, your joy will sustain as well, and it is the component of grace you can only receive from God that will carry you further in your joy past and through that which would steal it.