Be Still and Know…by Gus Keiser

Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. ~ Luke 2: 10-11

Quite a few years ago someone recorded a song with the title “Happiness Is.”  The lyrics to that song listed a variety of things that make people happy.  People are continually searching for whatever will make them happy.  What has caused me to think about that feeling of happiness is a sign I saw recently at a restaurant here in the area.  The sign in that restaurant window read: We Sell Happiness.  I know the owners of that restaurant were using the message as a way of encouraging people to come in and eat there, but as I thought about that message, it occurred to me just how many people in our world, especially during this holiday gift buying time, are convinced that it is possible for happiness to be bought and sold.  Happiness (joy) is not some commodity to be bought, sold or traded; it is a feeling from within.

 Christmas is that special time of the year during which we celebrate the coming of the one who has brought us that joy: Joy to the world, the Lord is come!  This is the greatest birth announcement of all time, an announcement filled with joy.

 Just think of all the excitement that goes into preparing for Christmas.  But yet for a lot of people, underneath all that glitter and glamour, not all is happy and joyful.  Families and individuals are dealing with economic problems, illnesses and deaths.  We try to masque them with colorfully wrapped packages and bows and outward feelings of happiness.  But true happiness can’t be packaged, found in sentiments on a Christmas card, or at festive holiday gatherings.  Beneath them all still lay the hurts and sufferings.

 But there is a joy we can have, a joy within that completely satisfies.

 This is the message of joy that God sent to the shepherds that night.  “For unto YOU is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord!”  Real joy comes from knowing Jesus Christ.  God’s message is a very personal one.  The angel said, “I bring YOU’.  God’s message is a universal one… “Which shall be to ALL people.”

 God’s joy comes from within; the worlds from without.  God’s joy has deep roots in himself; the world’s only on the surface.  God’s joy is unending; the world’s soon fades away.  God’s joy fills us completely; the world’s is only on the outside.  God’s joy satisfies; the world’s cannot.

May God’s joy fill your hearts and your lives at this Christmas time.  May his peace and love sustain you and prosper you during this coming year.  Merry Christmas and Amen.