Tragic news of the mass killing in Connecticut rocked the world last week. People’s emotions ranged from shock, sadness and grief to anger and outrage. Even the most peaceful of us found it hard to grasp how such a thing could happen at this joyful time of year.

But, many around the world are not joyful and deal with shootings and killings every day. Parents do not know whether their children will come home safely. Some have lost loved ones or have a dear one on death’s door. My own father is precariously hanging on to life.

Yet, today marks the third week of Advent and the color of the candle on my wreath is pink – symbolizing both unconditional love and joy. Despite the great evil in the world, we can still have joy and unconditional love. How can this be you ask?

Because joy is a calm inner knowing that God is always with us. His name, Emmanuel means exactly that. God came to this earth in the form of a baby to bring us peace and joy because he knew that we would not find these things in the world.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27)

“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11).

Yes, we can have Joy this season despite our circumstances. Jesus is here to comfort us in our time of need. Will you be the hand and feet of Jesus and reach out to bring someone comfort and joy this season?

Let the joy of the Lord be your strength and your shield today (Ps. 28:7). He will bring you out of darkness and into His great Light!

Until next time, keep looking up!

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