This is an unspeakable tragedy, that is obvious. In our day and age of technology and ever-increasingly paranoid security, we left our most precious innocents without protection. It makes me so so sad, but I also have all these angry angry feelings as well. How could this have happened? How? It reminds me that my little world of loved ones is not safe, not really. I suppose that it could always be worse...and I am incredibly and daily grateful for the blessing of safety, but still.
It makes me wonder where Christmas is this year. On tv this morning a pastor being interviewed said that this week in Advent the candle of Joy was lit. As Christians we should realize that we are able to possess joy, even when happiness is the last thing on our minds. Joy comes from God, and it cannot be taken away, even in the darkest of times.
In the weeks and months to come, I wish much joy to the families and the community in Connecticut. Joy in remembering the good times they had with loved ones lost. Joy for the teachers that protected their students at the ultimate cost. And joy that those who suffered are in a better place.
Jesus was the great joy, as it is said in Luke 2:10 "And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people." God gave up his only son...for the entire world. Jesus brought with him joy, abounding and unending. Although the times are dark now, I hope He can be the light for those who need it.
It seems somewhat silly to go on preparing for Christmas, but when reflecting about that, is it? Perhaps Christmas is even more necessary this year. In a shattered and terror-filled world, we need stability. And the coming of a baby, an innocent like those who lost their lives, may be exactly what brings back the joy.
My deepest desire this Christmas season is that Jesus will bring with him a little extra this year. A little extra joy, a little extra healing, even a little cooperation for legislators to work together to fix our nation. In realizing the joy that is Jesus, my hope is that others will continue to reach out and reflect His light to others in need. In this way we can begin to bring about healing that is deeply needed in our country.
In the midst of everything...before we continue on with our lives, stop and think. Jesus is the greatest present we can ever receive. He is a gift that is on it's way to us, one that brings hope, love, joy, and peace.
I will continue to prepare for Christmas, perhaps a little more urgently this year. Because our world needs it. Our world needs it desperately.
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33
Lots of love,