And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom He is pleased!" (Luke 2:13-14)
I love these angels. They are just so extremely happy about this wonderful Gift God is giving the human race—the Savior, Jesus, Christ the Lord. It's as if they can't control themselves, and once the lead angel has given his message clearly and carefully to the shepherds, they all burst onto the scene, celebrating and singing and praising at the top of their lungs. It's party time!
And they are right to do it. The book of Ecclesiastes reminds us that "For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die ..." (Ecclesiastes 3:1-2). Well, and so there is also a time to party, a time to be glad and celebrate—and this is it. This is not a time for sour faces, not a time to pick over old grievances or worry about the future.
That's a reminder I can use. By nature I am a worrywart. I can find something to be anxious about on the happiest occasion. And if I'm not anxious, I can become anxious about the fact that I'm not anxious! It's like an emotional snake swallowing its own tail.
To this God says, "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. ... The Lord is at hand" (Philippians 4:4-5). Oh yes, Jesus is definitely at hand—as a tiny baby sleeping in a manger; as the Lord of life who died and rose again to save us; as the One who has promised to come at the end of time and take us to be forever with Himself. This is good news!
And so we gladly say, "Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, that He might save us. This is the Lord; we have waited for Him; let us be glad and rejoice in His salvation" (Isaiah 25:9).
THE PRAYER: Lord, I am so glad You have come. Thank You for that. Amen.
* Do you remember any times when someone was cranky or pouting at a party?
* What kinds of worries steal your joy in the Lord?
* What might you do to remind yourself to take time to enjoy God's goodness and celebrate?
Advent Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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