"But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people." Luke 2:10
The shepherds found joy that night just as the angel promised. Once they found the joy they spread it around. True joy is contagious!
So, what is the source of joy? If it is contagious, why don't we see more of it? Do you have it? Would you like to have it?
I have been sharing with you some sources of joy based on the events that transpired that night. The birth of Jesus brought the joy of God's presence, and it brought the joy of God's pardon, and the joy of God's peace, and joy from God's power, and the joy of God's promises proven true, and joy because of the possibilities that faith in God brings to your life!
The possibilities are what I want to focus on this morning. Notice that the angel appeared to three different times in this chapter and each time he announced that there were greater possibilities for their lives if they would receive the good news and believe it.
There was Zachariah, the aged priest with a barren wife. They had prayed and dreamed of having a son all of their lives, but to no avail. Now the angel announced that what they had thought was impossible was now possible! Nothing is impossible with God!
Mary was a teen-aged girl making wedding plans and looking forward to being married to her fiance', Joseph. When the angel brought the amazing news that she would soon become the mother of the Son of God, it was not possible since she had never known a man. But her life was filled with possibilities because nothing is impossible with God!
Even the shepherds who live a lonely isolated life would become evangelists, proclaiming the birth of Christ and spreading the joy they had come to know! They never would have believed that was possible!
Loving God and living in Christ lifts the limits from your life! As the Apostle Paul came to understand, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". Imagine the joy of knowing that your life is filled with potential and possibilities when God is your God!
Over this past week I have shared six reasons to have joy because of the birth of Christ. Any one of these if reason enough for joy in itself, but the good news of Christmas is that ALL of these are available to you as a believer!
So, again I ask you, "How's your joy?" Are you living in joy? If not, why not? What are you lacking? What is missing?
Are you living in His presence? Have you received His pardon? Do you know His peace? Is His power at work in you? Do you believe His promises? Are you focused on your possibilities or are mired in your past?
Will you take a spiritual inventory of your life as 2010 draws to a conclusion and a New Year looms? Will you determine that for 2011 you are going to discover your joy?