Christmas brings all kinds of gifts into our lives. Not just the shimmer-wrapped gifts that are gently placed under the tree, and not even the ones that show up in the driveway with a big red bow on top (does that even happen in real life?!). I’m talking about the gifts we didn’t know we needed– gifts of comfort and joy.
We live in a world where even amidst being in pandemic, the songs heard overhead in the stores are the merry ones- the ones that have some pep and happy lyrics. Everywhere we turn in town, we see colorful reminders that this season is a cheerful one. In the daytime we see the beauty of frost and evergreen, and in the dark hours of night we see the glistening glow of Christmas lights beneath soft blankets of snow.
Inside our hearts, we can feel the excitement and the anticipation of gathering with loved ones at parties or coffee meetups. We can feel the urgency to finish all the shopping for the big meal or the letdown of realizing we forgot to grab the bag of chips for the 3rd time this week (don’t ask me how I know). We can also feel the joy of wrapping up the thoughtful gifts we’re planning on giving away to our loved ones.
We can feel a lot this season.
During my last post on the blog, we looked at the feelings we experience during the holidays when our hearts are heavy with grief. How knowing we have a Wonderful Counselor to be our source of strength and hope during the holiday season.
No matter if we are living life to the fullest and everything seems jolly, or if we just can’t seem to catch a break and the hits keep coming – we are all in need of comfort and joy this season. God knew we would need both.
We, you and me friend, need the comfort of His presence to remind us how loved we are and where we belong – close to His heart. We need the joy we find in His presence- lasting joy that doesn’t fade away when life feels out of control and hard.
We need both.
I need both.
Let’s take some time today to slow down to receive those gifts from God.
Speaking of slowing down, some of the most favorite and beloved Christmas songs are the slow ones- the ones that cause us to be still and to ponder; to wait for the “good part” or wait for the beautiful ending. On this Christmas Eve, may we create space to slow down for a moment and lean in to hear the “good part” – the part where the King of Kings sent His one and only Son, Jesus, to be Emmanuel- God with us. The part where Jesus came down to meet us at the very point of our need: our need for a Savior, our need for a Healer, our need for a Good Shepherd and Faithful Friend. The gift of His presence didn’t just end when He arrived, it continues to be with us today and, He promised He would be with us to the end of the age. He is our peace dear friends, and He has also given us the gifts of His comfort & His joy.
He is The Light that came to a dark and weary world, He is the Great Comfort we so desperately need and the Giver of Joy that this world cannot take away. He’s the Giver of Good & Perfect Gifts then, now, and in all the days to come.
May we experience comfort from His presence and joy from His Holy Spirit today and always.
Peace, Comfort, & Joy Dear Friends – liz:)
Let’s Pray: Lord Jesus, thank You for knowing our needs and meeting them too. Thank you for the promise that You are Emmanuel, God with us. Thank you for coming down for all humanity – and for being Our Light. We need Your presence today Lord, and in Your presence we find both gifts of comfort and joy. Your gifts are good because You are good and this Christmas Eve, remind our hearts that we have already been given these gifts for our soul. When the world feels cold and dark, shine Lord, so we can see Your goodness in front of us. Thank You Lord for the comfort and joy we find in You alone, Amen.
Go The Extra Mile: Check out one of my favorite Chrsitams carols below as The Petersen’s share, “God Rest Ye Merry Gentelemen”! This is a beautiful version and I hope it reminds us that we are given both comfort & joy because of Jesus!
BONUS: I couldn’t leave out my all-time favorite Christmas carol…I had to include my favorite version of, “O, Holy NIght” by Celine Dion! Enjoy it today as you prep for whever you’re going!