Monday 4th December

“I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” (Psalm 122:1)

setup 5

Who do you look forward to spending time with? You might know that feeling of longing to be with a friend or lover who promises to take you exactly as you are, all the great bits of you, and all the bits which you are not so happy about.

There is a deep joy which we feel at our center at such moments. Often, I think, it is a joy borne of relief that we are heading somewhere where we are loved and understood.

When we come into God’s presence we are invited to that same sort of joy, that deep ease that we are someone very special, someone very loved. Remembering that can be difficult in the constant hum and clatter of life. Even coming into God’s house on a Sunday can be busy and we can feel distracted.

Sometimes people talk about joy as something which we can grow all by ourselves. I think we can learn to be open to joy, but it is, ultimately, a gift from God, a gift which comes from relationship and self-acceptance.

At the start of Advent we might want to offer God a very simple prayer –

“God, let me believe that I am good enough, remind me that I am loved and let me be open to that deep joy which is excited by being in Your presence”.