For this week’s meditation on joy, I am reading from Isaiah 61 and Luke 1. Today, Isaiah brought joy to me. Verse 10 says
“He has covered me . . . as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland.”
Now, I don’t know much about grooms wearing garlands, but I do know that a wedding is a time of celebration. It is a happy affair that emanates the ending of one way of life and the beginning of another. The party is about relinquishing the old and welcoming the new. It is an event worthy of joy.
The idea of a garland-bedecked groom causes me to reflect on the evergreen garlands that hang in most places during this Christmas celebration. Since I was young, green garlands have fascinated me. They bring life indoors and spread their outdoor fragrance into our closed up living spaces. They remind me that the year is ending and a new one is about to begin.
These evergreen garlands symbolize what is fresh, what is alive, what is new, what is eternal. They remind me that something is afoot, that a world-changing babe is about to be birthed, and that along with this babe comes a new way of living together with God.
God with us—Oh! JOY!