Today we continue our season of Advent to prepare our hearts for Christmas. Our theme this year is “Let There Be Light!” All throughout Scripture God is said to be light and to radiate light and to shine light, overcoming the darkness in our world and in our hearts.
Because Christ has already come to us once and brought light into this world, the white Christ Candle has already been lit and will remain lit the entire Advent season. By this point, we have also lit the Candle of Hope and the Candle of Peace.
Today we light the Candle of Joy and take our Scripture from John 1:1-5, 9, 12, 14:
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it… 9 The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world… 12 All who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Have you ever been up early enough in the morning to see a sunrise? Several minutes before you actually see the sun, in that moment called “dawn” between darkness and sunrise, light leaps over the horizon declaring that the sun is on its way and will soon bring the joy of day.
Like that moment of dawn, the Old Testament shined light over the prophetic horizon declaring that the Son of God, the Light of the World, was on his way and that full joy was coming. We got a glimpse of the light, but it wasn’t until Jesus took on flesh and dwelt among us that the fullness of light, the true light, brought joy to the world!
And now Jesus’ light has scattered the darkness so that we might clearly see the way to salvation. Jesus’ light gives light to everyone, and all who believe in His name will have joy unspeakable, the joy of salvation, the joy of having your sins forgiven and receiving the gift of everlasting life. There is no greater joy!
And so today we light the Candle of Joy. As the fullness of Jesus’ light shines on you, may you enjoy the fullness of joy this holiday season. From our family to yours, “Merry Christmas!”
(Light the pink candle)