Devotional December 11, 2020

Side by Side with Jesus.                                                       Pastor Tom Joyce

December 11, 2020

“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in

God my Savior.”  Luke 1:47


The words of Mary, the mother of Jesus, celebrates with joy the blessings of God upon her life, the joy of carrying Jesus our Savior. These words did not come at a time of world peace or even a time of personal safety; they came with full knowledge that being pregnant in an unforgiving world could cost her life. Her statement came at a time of Roman occupation and social upheaval, still Mary rejoiced in God, the Author of her salvation. Often times we thank God and celebrate God’s blessings during times when everything makes sense and life just feels good. Yet Mary celebrated the joy of the Lord knowing God has blessed her even and especially for the journey that was before her. The joy of our Savior Jesus Christ is all about blessings, eternal blessings that cannot be counted, that are with us no matter life’s circumstances. For Mary, it was all about knowing God was with her and within her and that made all the difference. How about you? When does your soul “magnify the Lord?” The COVID virus has changed so much of what we do right now and at times it may be hard to see the blessings of God. The blessing of the presence of Jesus in our lives is truly the joy of living even in changing, uncertain times. While walking the hall of the church and into the sanctuary prepared for our Christmas celebration, I was at first saddened with the reality of not being able to have hundreds of people gathering for Christmas Eve worship holding candles while singing “Silent Night.” Then my soul was filled with the joy of the presence of Jesus and memories of Christmas Eve worship services of the past, making me realize that the blessings of Christmas are not contained in one moment of time nor one special service; Jesus never left my side, never left my soul, and never left the people, and has not left you. In the midst of a historically different Christmas celebration, there was Jesus loving me and offering the most amazing blessing of all; salvation.  How about you? How is your soul magnifying the Lord, rejoicing in the blessings you have and are receiving this very moment? Christmas celebrations will be different this year, except for one thing; the presence of Jesus the Christ, offering blessing upon blessing no matter what, no matter where. Rejoice in the Lord, especially today.

Rev. Tom Joyce



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Pastor Tom Joyce
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