Joy To The World

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 that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. Luke 2:9-11

I love to sing the familiar words of “Joy to the world, the Lord is come” every year we celebrate the birth of Jesus.

Unfortunately, for many of us, the lyrics have changed. We sing,

“Joy to the world, stress has come.”

“Joy to the world, dysfunctional family has come.”

“Joy to the world, depression has come.”

“Joy to the world, the fires have come.”

“Joy to the world, I am done.”

“Joy to the world, my money is gone.”

“Joy to the world, you make me mad.”

“Joy to the world, I have no joy.”

How about you? What are you singing these days? Truth is, we all can relate to the “Joy-killers” in our lives. We all have to deal with them. Joy-killers never take a holiday off. Neither do our hurts, natural disasters, and many other things beyond our control.

Here is what I know about Luke 2:9-11. The good news of Jesus and what He means to me dispels all the fears in my life and causes me to have great joy.

The good news of why Jesus came in the first place is a perfect picture of how there is no fear in love but perfect love cast out all fear. 1 John 4:18

If I am not consumed by perfect love, then fear starts consuming me. Once I let fear consume me, I lose sight of the good news of why Jesus came and what He means to me.

When I lose sight of why He came and what He means to me, then I lose my Joy and my song changes.

Today, I sing with a grateful heart, “JOY TO THE WORLD THE LORD IS COME,” and “I WILL REPEAT THE SOUNDING JOY” to everyone I come to know because when they see “JOY” in me they always ask why and where did you get it? And my answer is, “JOY TO THE WORLD THE LORD IS COME INTO MY LIFE AND HE IS MY CHRISTMAS!!!

No matter what you are you are experiencing this Christmas you can still have joy! Some of you may have been affected by the fires or know someone affected by them. We are praying for everyone affected and will continue to do so on Friday at Encounter. In fact we will take a good portion of the service and dedicate it to praying for those affected by the fires.

I look forward to seeing you all at Encounter as we continue our series, “This Is Us.”

Be Blessed and Encouraged


Bill Rieser

Encounter Pastor