Advent Devotional: Saturday, December 17

David Valentine

Third Week in Advent:  Joy
Saturday, December 17, 2011

Scripture: Luke 2:1-7

The Birth of Jesus

Opening presents is fun, exciting, and in some ways important because giving presents is one way we help people be happy.  Giving presents is also a way to show people we love them.  I always look forward to opening my Christmas gifts.  But presents are not as important as the birth of Jesus.

Advent Devotional: Friday, December 16

Kelsey Stillwell

Third Week of Advent: Joy
Friday, December 16, 2011

When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.  In a loud voice she exclaimed:  “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear!  But why am I so favored that the mother of my Lord should come to me?  As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.  Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!"  Luke 1: 41-45

What makes you smile?
-    A compliment from a friend
-    A good joke

Advent Devotional: Thursday, December 15

Henry Wilson

Third Week in Advent:  Joy
Thursday, December 15, 2011

Arise, shine, Jerusalem, for your light has come; and over you the glory of the Lord has dawned.  Though darkness covers the earth and dark night the nations, on you the Lord shines and over you his glory will appear.” ---  You will see it and be radiant with joy, and your heart will thrill with gladness.  Isaiah 60:1-2, 5a  (REB)

In him  was life, and that life was the light of mankind.  John 1:4

Isaiah prophesied that the “Light” of the Lord would come to Israel, and for those whose eyes were open to see, believe, and accept it, there would be great  joy and gladness.  Unfortunately, many of the Israelites did not see or accept this Light.

Advent Devotional: Wednesday, December 14

Paul Elwyn (Alberta’s favorite son-in-law)

Third Week of Advent: Joy
Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with much joy and peace while you trust in Him.  Romans 15:13

Joy, in the context of church community, exists on many levels, and can be realized when least expected.  Maureen and I were not formally searching for a new church community.  We simply wanted to be with my favorite mother-in-law, Alberta, on the Mother’s Day Sunday, the 30th anniversary of Jim Moynahan’s death.

Advent Devotional: Tuesday, December 13

Keith Stillwell

Third Week of Advent: Joy
Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Good News?

When the angel announced to Zachariah that he and Elizabeth would have their first son in their old age, he said, “You will have much joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the  Lord...He will turn many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God” (Luke 1:14-16, NRSV).  The angel presented the news of John’s coming birth as good news and Zachariah and Elizabeth received the news with joy.

Advent Devotional: Monday, December 12

Phil Leasure

Third Week of Advent: Joy
Monday, December 12, 2011

Luke 1:26-56

Christians call this period just before Christmas the Season of Advent.  It is a special time each year for reflection on and preparation for the birth of our Lord Jesus some two thousand years ago.  We dream, pray, write (as here), feast, fast, and reflect on that long ago event.  We try to imagine what that day of his birth might have been like in that arid Middle Eastern land and what it means for us today here in the rolling hills of Central Kentucky.

Advent Devotional: Sunday, December 11

Linda Kurtz

Third Week of Advent:  Joy
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Light the Candle of  Joy

Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.  Psalm 100:21
Let them sacrifice thank offerings and tell of His works with songs of joy.  Psalm 107:22

Many years ago, a popular singer wrote a song that referred repeatedly to the “elusive butterfly of love”.  In much the same way, the beautiful  emotion of joy can elude us as we go about our daily lives. Yet sometimes, when we least expect it, a feeling of joy can overwhelm us and fill us with a positive and renewed sensitivity to our world and the people around us.