Daily Advent Devotions from Church Street UMC
Tuesday, November 30
By Jenny Cross, Director of Youth & College Ministries
Comfort & Joy
Read Romans 15:13
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”
Here we are, at the end of another wild and unyielding year. A year of both good and bad, joy and heartache, struggle and hope. We arrive at Advent, harried and a little worn. We are eager and ready for something miraculous to happen—we need the promise of God’s presence with us.
The older I get, the more I see that joy and grief are not mutually exclusive—there is room for both at once. We see it in the laughter around the table after the loss of a loved one, or in the melancholy longing for things not yet to come in the midst of a beautiful day. It’s both/and. Both joy and sorrow, both comfort and pain.
Jesus comes to us as the ultimate both/and. Fully God and fully human. Tempted and sinless. Bringer of justice and giver of mercy. He offers us comfort and joy while giving us the charge to love and serve others like Him.
I find it easy to miss out on the blessings of this season. But this year, I want to cling a little tighter to those familiar tidings of comfort and joy—reminders that Jesus came to redeem and restore. And He still offers us those beautiful gifts of hope today.
Holy God, You are good and gracious, and we need you during this Advent season. Help us to become more aware of your presence as we walk through these days of preparation. We ask to experience both comfort and joy as you remind us of your deep love for us all. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.