Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!”
Luke 2:9-11 NLT
“Good news that will bring great joy to all people.”
Great joy. The word joy is interesting because more than one word is translated as joy in Hebrew and Greek. The basic concept of Biblical joy is an attitude based on hope in God’s promises. These promises declare a future destiny of good regardless of our immediate circumstances.
Biblical joy is never dependent on present circumstances. When the angel appeared to the shepherds and declared a message of great joy, the shepherds were not living in a time of joy. Their land was overrun by Roman invaders. They were being treated unfairly by these invaders, and life was tough. But the angels announced joy anyway.
God brings that same joy into the life of anyone who invites Jesus to be our Savior and Lord. His presence in our lives releases a sense of joy beyond circumstances or human understanding - a joy that carries us through difficulties, loss, brokenness, and disappointments.
There is no guarantee that life will always be smooth sailing. Storms will come. Problems will happen. People will hurt us, disappoint us, and treat us unfairly. If we expect to get joy from people, we will be disappointed.
Our talent, good looks, intelligence, and financial resources have limits. But God’s joy has no limits because it is not dependent on outside forces. God’s joy flows from His person.
Paul tells us in Galatians, chapter five, that joy is one of the fruit of having the Holy Spirit in our lives. Perhaps, the more we connect with God’s Spirit, the greater our joy.
Holy Spirit, I want Your joy in my life. I open my heart to a fresh revelation of You. I want You in charge.
Scroll down to share what you feel God is saying to you based on today’s reading.