Joy in the Lord: 3rd Sunday of Advent 2020

Joy in the Lord

I rejoice heartily in the Lord; in my God is the joy of my soul.

Isaiah 61:10

Our Search for Joy
As humans, we long for joy. Because we’re human, we’re not always sure how to seek joy, where we can find it, and if the source of our joy is good. Often, we find and settle for lower forms of joy. We find fleeting happiness in material objects and pleasure in superficial things and temporary feelings. These things of the world and the flesh come and go, so the greatest joy we’ll ever find is in God. He alone is eternal and almighty, so the truest and most perfect joy that we’ll ever experience lies with Him.

Joy in the Lord
Joy in the Lord

Rejoicing in the Lord
On Gaudete Sunday, the third Sunday of Advent, the first reading comes from the book of Isaiah. He describes the joy that he finds in God, and how he rejoices in Him. The Lord doesn’t just cause a grin, a giggle, or a little pleasant feeling. The joy that He offers is overwhelming in the best way. It cannot be contained, so we praise, worship, and boast in Him.

Reflecting on Isaiah’s words, I think of Mary’s Magnificat. When she visited her cousin, Elizabeth, Mary boasted in the Lord, sharing her joy in Him and the wonderful things that He has done, is doing, and will do. Like Isaiah, Mary says that her spirit rejoices in God (Luke 1:47). Having given Him her fiat, saying “yes” to His will in a big way, Mary found her joy in the Lord and rejoiced in Him. Of course, this joy cannot be contained, so she shared it beautifully and unceasingly by praising the Lord.

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Overflow with Joy
Although 2020 has shown us that everything comes and goes, we can still remember everything that God has done for us. This Advent, we can praise Him for all the blessings He grants us, the prayers that He answers, and the protection that He offers. This alone should stir our souls and cause us to rejoice, but there’s more. Now that Advent is half over, we know that we’ll be celebrating Christmas soon. Out of His never ending love for us, God became flesh to be with us and save us so that we could dwell with Him forever in Heaven. We can rejoice as we celebrate Jesus’ Nativity, and similarly, our hearts can overflow with joy in knowing that He’ll come again and that we’ll be together with Him in His Kingdom someday.

Stay radiant!

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Published by madeline_mckissick

Originally from Western Pennsylvania, Madeline spent a year of service in Washington DC before settling on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She and her husband, Nathan strive for holiness and Sainthood by living simply and intentionally with their eyes fixed on God. You can find Madeline wearing cardigans, enjoying a charcuterie board and a glass of wine, playing board games, spending time with her loved ones, and sometimes doing all four at once. Check out and @radiantwjoy on Instagram!

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