The Weary World Rejoices

How does a weary world rejoice?

I know people who are weary. I think of the one caring for elderly family members in their own small home. I think of the one going through chemo. I think of the one who has a family member dying of cancer. I think of the one who lost their job earlier this year. They’ve moved on, but change is difficult. I think of the one who was unemployed for a few months and is afraid it might happen again.

I know people who are fearful to be with others. I think of the one who recovered from COVID. I think of families who have lost loved ones to the virus. I think of the frontline workers surrounded by this virus every single day. They’re weary. When will life be normal again?

I see the news. As disturbing and twisted as it is. Who do we believe? We hear elected officials giving orders to do one thing, yet they do the thing they say we shouldn’t. Who can we trust? Both presidential candidates say they won the election. We hear of voter fraud. Will we ever know the truth? We’re weary of all the back and forth of pointing fingers and placing blame.

Some believe that the police should be defunded. Others are holding tight to that blue line. Some fear for safety. Others want revenge. They’re weary of not being heard. They’re weary of being fearful in their own neighborhoods.

Where is our hope? How can we feel joyful at a time like this?

 I must say. This year has been much easier on me than it has on most others. The only change I saw was my commute to work. I’m now working from home indefinitely. But I am weary for the ones who are weary. I am weary of the world’s lament. I am weary from the loss of joy in what is a good life. I am weary thinking of an uncertain future.


Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock. Isaiah 26:4


But then I remember the reason for the season. The weary world has a reason to rejoice.

I think of Mary, the unwed pregnant girl. She was given news that would make most women joyful. But in her day, that was unwelcome news. I’ve never been with a man. She told the angel standing before her. How can it be? But behold. The God who created the universe planted the seed who became the physical Son of God. The young Mary was to give birth to this God child.

Imagine Joseph. When he heard the news of his betrothed’s pregnancy, he didn’t take it well. He knew the child wasn’t his. How could he trust her? He would have to set aside the dream of marrying this girl bride. He was weary thinking of how to tell his family and friends. The village was small. News would travel. Fast. How could he put her away quietly?

But the angel in his dream shared God’s truth that this child was the Son of God. And Joseph chose to believe. He chose to believe. Oh. He would marry Mary and raise the child as his own. But he knew the truth and believed the angel’s message.

Oh. It was a huge belief. The people had waited for so long for the promised Messiah. And now he would be born in the worst of times. There was a census. Joseph took Mary to Bethlehem to be counted. Mary, huge with child, rode a long bumpy ride. Knowing she carried the Son of God, she endured. She was weary. They were weary when they arrived in Bethlehem. No room. They were told. Hugely pregnant and no room for comfort. Instead, they found space with the animals. And in the lowliest of places, the Son of God was born.

It was a starry night. The shepherds in the field saw the star and knew something amazing had occurred. The angel shared the message. Find the babe in the manager. And they did. The shepherds weary from a long day’s work found the baby just as they were told. And yet. They rejoiced. They knew they were in the presence of God wrapped in newborn skin. They worshipped.

So we can rejoice among our weariness. We can choose to believe the truth of God’s love and His gift of salvation. We can set aside the lies the world tells us. The lies that cause our hearts to be weary. We can rejoice. We can choose joy. We can worship the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Oh. Come let us adore Him. Christ the Lord.

Uncharted Waters

John was sent to live in exile on the island of Patmos as a result of anti-Christian persecution. His crime: he preached the word of God and he lived his life as a testimony for Jesus. He lived and survived alone on that island. All alone.

But he wasn’t alone.

During John’s exile, God was close to him. God was all he had. God spoke to him through a vision. John wrote down everything he saw in the vision. The name of his book is Revelation. It is the last book of the Bible. It’s a unique book full of visions and prophecies. God spoken words in a time of aloneness but never alone.

What does a man do all alone on an island? How does he spend his time? How does he survive? What goes through his mind? Will he be bored with only God to talk to? Does he have God’s word stored in his heart? Can he can dig through the reservoir of his mind and find strength and comfort from his knowledge of Scripture? When all has been lost, is his faith in God alone enough?


Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12


We may feel like we’re living in exile at this moment in history. But we’re not. Some of us are living with family. Some are alone, but they keep in touch with family and friends. If you know someone who is truly alone, reach out. Check on them.

This time in history is a first for everyone. Uncharted waters for even the best of us. Now is the time to gather your family close. Those who live with you. Those you can be with. Keep in touch with family and friends. The contact means so much.

Oh. Things have changed. We can no longer shop in stores. visit a salon. eat in a restaurant. go to a movie. Sure. These closings are temporary, but they’re new to us. We’ve never experienced anything like this. This change will continue without an ending in sight. Who knew?

Private funerals. Private weddings. Even close family members can’t attend. Hospital patients alone without family or visitors. Everyone needs to stay in place.

Oh. It’s easy to be frustrated. My hair appointment was only 5 days away when it was canceled. My grocery store was out of potatoes. The bakery that makes my dogs favorite treats has been out of them for weeks. I’ve had to start working from home. Petty inconveniences.

Lean in. They say. Hold your loved ones a little closer. Look across the room at the one who stole your heart. Think back to the reason they won your heart. And pause. Remember the moments of first love. And recall the reasons you chose to say “I do”. Make the most of this time with your loved ones.

Watch your children as they do homework. Oh. You may have never planned to home school, but now you are. Make the most of it. Be patient. Extend grace. Show mercy. Have fun. Let these days be the good times your kids look back on when they are older.

Allow yourself to become bored. This could spur you on to learn a new hobby. A hobby that could be life changing. Or not. But who knows what change can do for you. Be willing to explore. Read a book. Take a walk. Try a new recipe. Let your hair grow. You have no choice in the matter. Embrace it.

Pay it forward to the grocery worker. Pharmacy staff. Delivery drivers. Bankers. Healthcare workers. First responders. City, county, state and national employees. Everyone needs a break every now and then. Don’t judge a person’s politics. Embrace differences. But keep your convictions.

Lasting self confidence is built in pure faith in God. Trusting and obeying God in the hard times of life builds a strong reliance on him that produces an unmatched strength of character. 

In Christ alone I place my trust. 

This period of isolation may be the time in your life where you reap the greatest blessings from God. This may be the season where you find life’s true meaning. Trust the master of the uncharted waters to lead you to new depths in your walk with him. 

Read a book. Study the Bible. Memorize Scripture. Live out the Beatitudes. Honor those in authority. Pray. Really pray.

That money you would typically spend at a restaurant or sports event or concert. That money you would use to pay for a haircut or a massage or a pedicure. All that discretionary money you aren’t spending right now. Put it into savings. Or give to a needy nonprofit organization. Send an extra check to your church. Give to others in need. After all, how many new clothes or shoes do you need if you’re staying home all day? How much food or toilet paper do you need to hoard when others can’t pay their rent? How do you expect charities to help when they don’t have the funds coming in? How is a church supposed to help in times of crisis if believers aren’t faithful in giving their tithes and offerings?

Be generous. Be the giver. Be the gift. Chart new waters.