"Joy to the World, the Lord had come, let earth receive her King!"
I'm sure you have all heard this song and sung it a time or two, but I was wondering if you have Felt it this holiday season?
I mean with all of the changes in the weather, the economy, the News of Your Child's Diagnosis of Cancer. Its a little bit harder to find that certain Joy that supposedly comes with this time of year. Now with Christmas approaching fast and medical bill coming in without Black Friday prices, any hope of Joy is now covered with an avalanch of uncertainty. The best thing to do now would seem to find a cave and sleep until March. Joy to the World, but leave me alone I say.
The holidays can be a real sensitive subject for families with cancer, especially those who have lost their kids, but there is a secret that I want to reveal that I have found to discovering Joy. You know that older woman wearning the red sweater, who lost her husband last spring, but is still smiling as she Gives you a hug at church on Sunday morning? She knows the secret. Then the construction worker who has been laid off for a year and a half, but Gives you all of his attention as you tell him how profitable your company was this year. He knows the secret. Then there is Santa Clause himself. He may only work one day a year and never has to fight traffic getting to the mall, but he Gives everything he's got to get those presents under the tree for kids on Christmas morning because he knows the joy it brings to their hearts.
This secret may not be so secret after all, but it is not one that is so easy to find in times of need. Let me Give you one more hint. The secret to Receiving Joy is always in Giving. The Bible couldn't be more clear in Luke 6:38 Jesus says "Give and it will be Given To YOU. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into you lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
Now I know this seems like a hard test to pass, but the alternative is simply indulging in the pain and misery that hurts you and those around you. There is no Giving in this and your other children will notice it the most. Can you really imagin not giving any of yourself to your kids at Christmas?
You don't have to dig very deep when you don't have much to give this Christmas, just give what you can and you will feel a huge burden lifted. It will be tough but remember on Christmas "This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength."