Posted in Odds & ends

A word for 2018: Joy

JoyThis Sunday, my church celebrated Epiphany. Epiphany is the religious holiday commemorating the visit of the Magi who followed the star to find the Christ child. It emphasizes that Jesus is a gift for both the Hebrew people and gentiles alike.

One of the ways that churches mark the holiday is by giving out paper stars with words written on them for us to reflect upon throughout the new year. Rather than giving us a random word, our pastor today asked us to think about the joy of Christmas… how we see it in our lives, and how we can share it with others.

And you know what? That’s good advice at any time, but in 2018? We need to fight to hold onto joy and to share it with others where we can.

Individually, we cannot fight all the injustice in the world or bring about peace. But we can look for ways to help. Maybe that looks like calling your politicians about issues that are important to you. Maybe it looks like running for office or starting a non-profit to address those issues more directly.

Maybe it just means checking on your lonely or elderly neighbor, or noticing and acknowledging the homeless person who’s looking for money or food instead of pretending that you don’t see them. Maybe it’s even just offering a kind word or a smile, because that’s all we can do in that moment.

So I’m going to try to hold onto the joy of Christmas throughout the year, and share it with others as much as I can. Who else is with me?