December 19, Day Seven of Week Three – The Way of Peace though Joy

Luke 1:  76 – 79  Zechariah’s Song  “And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, be those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.” 

RainbowJoyful, Joyful  Song Link

REFRAIN:  Joyful, joyful, Lord, we adore Thee
God of glory, Lord of love

Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee
Hail Thee as the sun above
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness
Drive the dark of doubt away

Giver of immortal gladness
Fill us with the light
Fill us with the light
Oh, fill us with the light of day  REFRAIN

Drive it away
Giver of immortal gladness
Fill us, fill us with the light of day, light of day

Joyful, joyful, Lord we adore Thee
An’ in my life I put none before Thee

‘Cuz since I was a youngster I came to know
That you was the only way to go

So I had to grow an’ come to an understandin’
That I’m down with the King so now I’m demandin’
That you tell me who you down with, see

Cuz all I know is that I’m down with G O D
Come and join the chorus
The mighty, mighty chorus
Which the morning stars begun
The Father of love is reigning over us

By the way, what have you done for Him lately?
He watches over everything
So we sing REFRAIN

Reflection:  My Aunt Kitty has always said only happy people can sing.   She would cook a meal, singing “Holy, Holy, Holy”.   Then she’d yell at us for doing something we shouldn’t have been doing and go back to singing without missing a beat.  Joy is a powerful, powerful emotion, not only found in big moments.  Tonight, I walked our dog through our neighborhood.  When I say walk the dog, what I mean is stand on the other side of the leash while she smells every leaf and twig in every yard.  Our walks are more like strolls.  While I wait for her to be ready to move on, I can see families sitting down for dinner, a student doing homework at the dining room table, a mom hunched over a computer, consulting a paper in her hand.  Outside, the leaves lie thickly on the lawns, filling the air with fall.  A few brave leaves are still clinging to the leaves.  A little boy is kicking around a soccer ball in his front yard.  Dogs bark from behind closed doors as we pass.  The streetlights come on, challenging the lingering sun to a stare down.  A quiet joy filled me as Sasha and I meandered.  Joy that I had a dog that makes sure I get outside every day and see my world up close.  Joy that I am able to live in a neighborhood safe to walk in at twilight.  Joy that I can walk around the block again after a lengthy illness.  Joy for all the signs of family and community that fill my streets.  I came home, took off my coat, put away the leash, but the joy?  I’m still wearing that.  Singing, “Holy, holy holy.”

Action:  Find some joy today.  Sing out loud.  Laugh heartily.  Have a songfest with your family or friends.  Put your favorite Christmas music on and sing along.  Drive around and look at the lights with Christmas music blaring.  Pour out your stocking of joy and read through all the moments this week that you and your family found joy.  Mention the ones you forgot to write down.  Make some Jiffy Pop and watch Sister Act 2 – you can’t do either one without joy bouncing around in you.  Take a walk through your neighborhood – with or without a dog.  Let your joy be way to peace.

Dear God, Joyful, joyful, Lord we adore thee!  Thank you for this world of infinite treasure you have bestowed on us.  Today we are breathing joy in and out.  We are singing, Holy, Holy, Holy.  We have found joy in small crevices and loud voices.  Our joy is our prayer and our thanks, eternal.  Filled with the light, Amen.

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