To get the most out of this devotion, set aside time to read the scriptures referenced throughout.
Last Sunday we talked about shalom, which is God’s perfect peace. With peace comes the promise of joy—a promise for the future, but also for right now. If the Lord’s joy were a house, we wouldn’t just be welcomed in; it would be our home address. (See John 15:10-11.)
Biblical joy is different than what many people think. It’s more than a simple emotion or a sense of overall cheerfulness. Joy in Christ isn’t dependent upon our situation or mood—it flows from our connection with the Lord and transcends our circumstances. Because of all He’s done and continues to do, we can rejoice in Him no matter what happens. (See Neh. 8:9-10.)
In Advent, Christ is the reason we wait with great expectation. Colossians 1:13-14 tells us that on the cross, “He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” So as Christmas draws near, take heart. The One “who is, and who was, and who is to come” is near (Rev. 1:4).
Think about it
• What’s standing in the way of you experiencing the fullness of joy in Christ? Ask the Holy Spirit for help in recognizing any obstacles and for grace to overcome them.
Bible in One Year: 1 Thessalonians 1-5