Pastor David Moore  

Old Testament reading: Isaiah 49:5-7 

And now the Lord says—he who formed me in the womb to be his servant to bring Jacob back to him and gather Israel to himself, for I am honored in the eyes of the Lord and my God has been my strength—he says: “It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”  

This is what the Lord says—the Redeemer and Holy One of Israel—to him who was despised and abhorred by the nation, to the servant of rulers: “Kings will see you and stand up, princes will see and bow down, because of the Lord, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.”  

Advent theme today is JOY.  

You can buy happiness, but you can’t buy joy.  It comes sideways often and through the windows or back door. ~D. Moore  

Money can make you happy, but it can’t buy joy. Happiness is an emotion. Joy is a state of being.  

New Testament reading: Luke 2:8-20 

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were  terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger.”  

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,  “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”  When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”  So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all  who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things  and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.  

John 10:27  

My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.  

Joy is a gift from God. It fills us from within. ~Pope Francis  

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.   James 1:2-3

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13  

Joy is never in our power and pleasure often is. ~C. S. Lewis  

Who does the filling of the human heart with joy? God does the filling of our heart with joy. Joy is a gift from God.  Joy comes to all kinds of people. The joy in Jesus simply comes at unexpected times.  Joy is never in our power. Joy is a surprise gift of becoming a follower of Jesus. ~D. Moore  

This Christmas think about the times in your life that gave you joy. Thank God for that joy; it is a gift  from Him, our Creator.  

God bless, and prepare your heart and mind for the wonder of Christmas this year!