Joy

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Tonight, I attended a celebration.

A nearby city has an annual event to begin the Christmas season.

At this event, the crowds await the moment when the switch will be flipped and TWO MILLION Christmas lights decorating the downtown park area come on.

The mayor of the city spoke to the hundreds of people who had gathered.

She led a countdown to the time the lights would finally illuminate the park.

As soon as the lights came on, the crowd was told that there would be a song.

Broadcast on loudspeakers throughout the downtown area, “Joy to the World” was sung.

Standing in the street, I sang along.

Fighting back tears, my heart was full.

Here, with all those people, we were beginning the Christmas season as a community.

And we were starting it with “Joy to the world, the Lord is come!”

The hymn was written based on this Psalm:

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
    burst into jubilant song with music;
 make music to the Lord with the harp,
    with the harp and the sound of singing,
 with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn—
    shout for joy before the Lord, the King.

Let the sea resound, and everything in it,
    the world, and all who live in it.
 Let the rivers clap their hands,
    let the mountains sing together for joy;
 let them sing before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
    and the peoples with equity.

—Psalm 98:4-9

Leaving the park, I saw a church steeple, brightly lit just a couple of streets over.

It reached high into the night sky, another reminder of Jesus.

Christmas is about Him, you know.

Joy to the world! The Lord is come!

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