Today’s blog is written by Brandi Kirby. Read as she shares with us how she chooses to rejoice in the hope Jesus brings even in seasons of darkness.

“When they saw the star, they were filled with joy!”
-Matthew 2:10

When I was a little girl my parents allowed me to have a tiny tree in my bedroom. Picture a plump version of a Charlie Brown tree with bright white and multi-colored lights. The dazzling lights against the tinsel mesmerized me for weeks! The joy of the upcoming day was almost too much to contain. I felt like I was going to burst. I would belt out the verses of Jingle Bells and Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer along with the classic hymns of Silent Night and O Come All Ye Faithful as I caroled with my friends. 

A lot has changed since then; my tree is much bigger, my life more complex, but the twinkle of the holiday lights and the sound of the music still sparks excitement in my heart. As Christians, we know Christmas is much more than holiday lights, tinsel, good music and shopping for the perfect gift. Christmas is a specific time to celebrate and rejoice because of the birth of our Savior and King, Jesus Christ. 

In the book of Matthew, three wise men visit Jerusalem asking where they could find the new born king. They “saw his star as it rose.” (Matthew 2:2) Take a minute to think about his star. It had to twinkle and shine bright high in the sky. It guided their way to baby Jesus. I imagine they couldn’t contain their excitement seeing that light! A light in the sky shown bright for the light of the world to be born in darkness. 

Darkness is something we all experience in our life on this Earth. This year, my family faced several life-threatening illnesses. My city and nation were scarred by hate and violence. Many families are without their loved ones this Christmas. I am reminded in all of this the Lord commands us to be joyful. The word rejoice is a verb, therefore it is something you do. We all know it is difficult to rejoice in pain, but Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 6:10, “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.” He goes on to say in Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”

Jesus was born, rejoice! Jesus was born; rejoice in sadness. Jesus was born; rejoice in pain and hurt.

Father God – Thank you for the light of the world. May the light in our hearts never grow dim. I pray we faithfully choose each day to be joyful and rejoice in you always. 

“I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.”
-John 12:46

“Exult in his holy name; rejoice, you who worship the Lord.”
-1 Chronicles 16:10