LOVE AND JOY
Author: Bishop R. Braun
Advent, (from Latin adventus
, “coming”), in the Christian church calendar, is the period of preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas, and of preparation for His second coming.
When we search the word “Advent”, four words normally appear. They are hope, peace, love, and joy. Let us direct our thoughts just towards love and joy.
The birth of Christ really shows us two things. Firstly, it shows us the love of God. Secondly, it reminds us of the life of Jesus, and together with His teachings, this brings us much joy. Let us reflect on these two Bible passages that speak to love and joy.
1. John 3: 16 (NKJV) – “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
2. John 15: 11 (NKJV) – “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”
How do we experience the love and joy of Jesus today? Firstly, it comes through hearing His words. Secondly, by putting what He has taught us into practice.
When we think of the love of Christ, we are truly inspired by His love for us. We cannot only think of the celebration of His birth, but the sacrifice He made for all humankind. That is true love. When we not only hear about the teachings of Christ, but also put it into practice, it brings us joy because we have shared His joy with others.
If we summarize the time of advent, it truly is about hope, peace, love, and joy. These are all gifts from God. As Christians, we believe that God’s greatest gift is love because He sent His son so that we may have everlasting life. When we recognize and accept these gifts, it brings true joy this time of year and all year long.