To say the year has gone by quickly is an understatement. It was only last year, at this same time I was traveling home with the Jan Masuhr Band after a Christmas concert engagement on December 23, 2011 that we wondered whether or not we would make it home before December 25th. The interstate coming out of Switzerland was entirely blocked, and we had to take a detour through some small villages and towns our navigator had no knowledge of and it kept sending us around in circles. It was raining, the streets were dark, slippery, and the signs were difficult to read, and an excellent concert with a full house was suddenly challenged by the circumstances, which confronted us on the way home.
- How do you cope with unexpected circumstances beyond your control?
You have just experienced a high, something has turned out well, and you have succeeded and walked through an open door and then bang! Something unexpected happens that tries to steal your joy. Such things always happen at Christmas, and they can be devastating.
In our bus, we took a look back at the concert and remembered the joy on the faces of the people who had come out to celebrate the Christ Child voluntary coming into the world, and this warmed our hearts and kept us balance. It was early morning when we finally got home, but our hearts were still filled with thanksgiving and joy, and each one of us was able to participate joyfully in our own church’s Christmas services.
Christmas lies in the heart. It is not an emotion, but a fact we should never forget. It is a momentous day set aside where we acknowledge God came down and made himself known through his son Jesus Christ. It is a day of joy, no matter our circumstances.
I am not talking about the joy that comes from gifts, laughter, or from jokes being told. No, the type of joy I am thinking about is the joy, which comes from resting in God. It is the joy that tells you,
- To hold on,
- To not give up,
- To have faith.
It is the joy that dares you to move on when you are at your deepest and darkest point in life; it is the joy that comforts when your heart aches with pain and sorrow; it is the joy which brings you peace and contentment when the seas around you are raging, and turmoil is on every corner.
So, today I wish all of you, Joy! The joy that surpasses all understanding!
Nollaig Shona Dhuit!
Buone Feste Natalizie!
Prejeme Vam Vesele Vanoce a stastny Novy Rok!
Nollaig Chridheil dhuibh!
Natale hilare et Annum Faustum!
Mo’adim Lesimkha. Chena tova!