Sunday Stride – Where will you seek joy this week?

Where will you seek joy this week?

How can you find joy even amidst the challenges you are currently facing? That the world around you is facing?

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I find that joy is a tricky thing these days. 

There are, of course, joyful songs of Christmas on the radio. There are joyful decorations outside homes and in stores and office buildings. There are joyful gatherings happening – many that were not happening last year. There are presents being wrapped and elves on shelves and pajama days at school. Their are cheesy Christmas movies (I’ve already watched quite a few)

There are so many ways to see joy manifested all around us.

And yet their is also grief and sadness and uncertainty as well. There are moms praying over their sick children. There are tornadoes ravaging towns. There are people healing from accidents and illnesses and holding their families together. There is still a pandemic. 

The list of things that put joy into question can go on and on if we let it. 

And yet, joy still persists. 

In Churches that celebrate Advent, today is Guadete Sunday – a Sunday dedicated to joy.  In the traditional Advent wreath, a pink candle will be lit this morning, and we will pray for the coming birth of our Savior.

And maybe, by the glow of the flickering pink light, we will also be reminded that God and the Holy Family never fail to walk along side us even in the most challenging of human circumstances.

Maybe it will be almost impossible not to feel that joy, even in the midst of all the other things.

Maybe then we can start today in happiness and in kindness blessed by the knowledge of another season of Christmas ahead.

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