Advent (Week Three)

Dec 11, 2022    Jeremiah Knoop

Advent (Week Three) // The Candle of Joy

"A Shepherd’s Joy"

We are shepherds //

We live here on these lonely slopes //

Where no one hopes – to hear anything but the sound of wind – and sheep. //

As the cities sleep – our vigilance keeps. //

For we – are the watchers of the night. //

We are left alone. Unseen. Unknown. Despised in the eyes of men. //

But then – in a moment – our status was shattered //

As the night sky scattered – to make room heaven’s host! //

It was the most – magnificent thing we had ever heard or seen: //

This symphony amongst the stars. //

“Behold,” //

We were told, “Do not be afraid. //

This night was made – for joy, not fear. //

For the Savior of the world, Christ, the Lord is here!” //

So, imagine our joy that this infinite glory, //

this nativity story – was first announced to us. //

To us! Lowly shepherds… //

Messiah’s birth – announced to us!? //

This sign on earth – pronounced to us!? //

Salvation, here, beneath these stars! //

This manger invitation – ours! //

We, the first to see His face, //

To touch the hands of sovereign Grace. //

Our lowly eyes – the first to see. //

Our lowly hearts – first to believe. //

Our lowly lips – the first to speak – of prophecy unfurled, //

“JOY – to the world, the Lord has come. //

Let earth receive //

her King.” //

The third candle of Advent is the Candle of Joy. It is also called the “Shepherd’s Candle”. As we light it, we remember the message of joy that was given to the shepherds on that glorious night – as the darkness exploded with the glory of the Lord: //

Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tiding of great joy

which will be to all people" (Luke 2:10). //

This joy is for all people: //

for the highest of kings and for the lowest of shepherds. //

Both – find their true place in worship before the King of kings, //

The One of whom creation sings, //

“Joy to the world, the Lord has come.”