Written by Sonia Grandison

And just like that, we’re in the month of December when we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  It goes without saying, this Christmas will be different from any other in recent memory but still I am grateful and brimming with joy.

So, what does joy mean to me? Joy doesn’t just come from having a wonderful husband and two beautiful children,  it comes from knowing God.  A God who I trust and therefore I can live my life confident that He is taking care of me .  When you trust someone like this, it brings you undeniable joy.  It is hard to be happy when you’ve just lost your job, or if a loved one has been  taken suddenly;  it’s difficult to look at what’s happening around us and remain optimistic about  the future but having joy makes all the difference.

There are many things, good and bad, I have experienced in life that could have caused me to lose my joy.  When my first born came into the world, this should have been a time of rejoicing but instead days after her birth, my health started to deteriorate.  I can remember praying to God whilst in the hospital and  struggling to breathe and asking Him whether I would live to see my daughter grow up.  The consultant told me that my organs were failing and they didn’t know what to do about it which led  my family and friends to go into a time of prayer and fasting on my behalf.  After a few days, the consultant came to my bedside and informed us that the night before he had an “inspiration” to try a particular drug and praise be to God my body reacted well and I can say I came out of the hospital healed.  My God, who is a faithful God, had proved Himself again.  I started to read and sing from the Psalms, encouraging myself that the joy of the Lord is my strength.  God healed my body. 

There are always obstacles along the way but I believe it’s how you choose to go through your tests and trials that counts.  Do you sit down and have a pity party or do you continue to worship the God who heals and delivers knowing that He will see you through?  I, like many of you, have chosen to worship during the hardest times of our lives and He’s proven to be faithful every time.

As you celebrate during this Christmas season, and  gather around your dining tables, use this time to reflect on the blessings of God.  Be grateful for life, health, family and friends.  It’s nice to have presents underneath the tree but even nicer to have His presence around the tree.  True joy comes when we know the reason why we celebrate Jesus Christ, born so that our future is secure.  What better gift could we ask for? Joy to the World, the Lord is Come!

Sonia Grandison is Legal Secretary, a member of the Leadership Team for Women’s Discipleship Ministries, and a Church Leader with Chrisma Christian Centre.

This post is part of an advent series. Twenty-Four diverse voices have been invited to share some thoughts on one of four themes (Hope, Peace, Joy and Love) each day during the season of Advent. Each contributor has been given just one theme and no further parameters – they may write as much or as little in the style of their own choosing.

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