Archive for December 29th, 2021


December 29, 2021

Joy and the Holy Spirit


 The New Testament brings us the good news that not only does God walk among us as one of us, God’s Spirit lives constantly within, bringing us healing, hope and joy.

The Apostle Peter who denied his friendship with Jesus three times on the evening before the crucifixion now stands before anyone who will listen as he describes the joy of his relationship with the risen Christ. Using King David’s words, Peter calls others to this same intimacy.

Acts 2:23 & 28: I saw the Lord ever before me, with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed. You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.

As we read more of Peter’s speech in Acts 2:14-41, we have the opportunity to decide what words we might use to describe our own relationship with the risen Christ.  We might also consider how the Spirit has settled into our bones and has brought us moments of joy at unexpected moments.

Perhaps the greatest joy we find in this collection of early stories is in Chapter 15 in which Luke describes the first church council in Jerusalem. Early leaders come together to sort through a conflict with the potential of erasing the church before it has even found its footing. Taking heed of the counsel of the Holy Spirit, council members not only resolve their conflict, they go forth to share their joy with others.

Acts 15:3: They were sent on their journey by the church, and passed through Phoenicia and Samaria telling of the conversion of the Gentiles, and brought great joy to all.

joyFor more joy in Acts, read about Philip and the Ethiopian in Chapter 8; or explore the verses describing Paul’s arrival and address at Antioch in Pisidia in Chapter 13. Let us take a few moments of this precious Christmastide before 2014 closes to consider how joy has surprised us in the midst of sorrow. And let us consider how we might share this good news in the new year.

If this week’s Noontimes call you to search for more ways to encounter Joy or urges you to investigate the New Testament, click on the word Joy in the categories cloud in the blog’s right-hand sidebar and choose a reflection, or enter those words in the blog search bar.

Image from: http://www.examiner.com/article/jesus-the-holy-spirit-will-teach-you-everything

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