Mars Hill Staff Devotional
“Tis the season to be jolly?” With mass shootings, war in the middle east, an economic cliff, etc,. where’s the joy? For our staff devo yesterday, we also looked at a Christmas message in the middle of the book of Job 19:13-27 (via Ray Stedman… Follow the link below to read the full lesson).
The old Christmas carol tells us to “Deck the halls with boughs of holly … ’tis the season to be jolly,” but I have noted, as I am sure you have, a very strange and somber mood this Christmas. The energy crunch has kept all the decorations from the streets, and not many houses are showing bright lights either. It is a rather dull and gloomy Christmas in comparison with those of the past. Most of us feel the somberness of this occasion, especially as we read in the newspapers the chilling stories of cruel and ruthless murders occurring in many places today. We know that famine is spreading in the Sahara, war clouds hang over the Mideast, and corruption in politics still occupies the front pages of our newspapers.
Many people today are asking, very honestly, “What is there to celebrate about Christmas?” Perhaps many of you are facing personal sorrow in your own lives, feeling pain and tragedy. And despite the joy of family reunions there is an inner pain and darkness.
I had lunch this week with a man who told me he had all the outward marks of success. He was eminent in his profession, had a beautiful home and a lovely family — all these things that people count as important. And yet inwardly he was filled with a constant agony and a sense of self-doubt. Many are feeling this way. “Where is the joy of Christmas?” they say.