And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 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 Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Luke 2: 8 – 12
This Christmas it would be so easy to focus on being afraid like the shepherds. We are having a Christmas that is so different from ones in our past. We can’t have all our whole family together to share a meal. We have to choose which two households to spend time with in our 5 day window and who we can’t have into our house. We can’t travel too far away and have to be wary of public transport. We can’t give anyone outside our bubble a hug and kiss on Christmas day. Although there is news about the vaccine it is still an unknown and we are not sure how some people will react to the immunisation. All pretty negative isn’t it?
However we can and we should zoom in on the part that says there is good news that will cause great joy for all the people. There are lots of things we can do to bring joy to others and in doing so will give us joy -:
- Smile at a stranger and say hello when you are out walking
- Send a letter to a friend
- Watch the sun rise or set
- Volunteer to help someone who is struggling
- Donate toys to underprivileged children
- Reconcile a broken relationship
- Put up Christmas lights in your garden or window for people passing by to enjoy
The list is endless
This year more than ever we need to reflect on the joy and hope of the Christmas season.
We pray for joy in our hearts, hope in God and peace upon the earth. As we interact with others, help us to be kind and compassionate to one another. Show us ways to love and care for those both inside and outside our homes. Holy Spirit, fill our hearts with your love. Amen.
Action: What can we do to bring joy to others today?