• Jason Wade


2 Restore to me the joy of your salvation

and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalm 51:2

Just for a moment I want us to once again step into the power of silence. For 30-60 seconds I want all of us to find a place that we can have almost complete silence and breathe. As we are moving through this Advent season, I am asking that we understand the power of silence that will lead to JOY. It still blows my mind to watch as people find ways to create chaos in chaos. How do I know this occurs, just go to ANY Walmart at this time and buy one item and see how long it takes you to check out. I know that 2020 has been a really crazy and hectic year, but I also know that God has been trying to teach us a very valuable lesson about JOY. Joy is not found in the presents or the big todo with Christmas lights. I pause because I love Christmas lights... but God is found in the small things that we cannot see. God has been giving us these moments all year long to step into JOY through silencing our lives... our schedules... our calendars.... and yes, even our minds. God has been speaking to us and we have been so busy trying to fill the silence that we have once again missed the JOY in the still small voice.

You know there is a reason that there was 400 years of silence between the Old and New Testament connection with God. In those years, God was providing a time of hearts to yearn for the Creator to return. God was providing time for His people to reconnect in a way that drew their spirits to God. With every day that passed, the JOY and ANTICIPATION continued to grow with every generation that passed of to when the Messiah was coming. Remember Advent comes from the latin word adventous and it means in preparation. The silence was given to the world as a time of preparation of what was to come and just between you and me....WOW.. what a way for the JOY of the world to make an entrance. But

remember it was not with fanfare like Aladdin coming to Acroba with elephants, trumpets, and an entourage. It was in the soft spoken words of a baby that was lying in a manger. The silence sometimes can be deafening because we really don't want to hear what God is trying to say to us. We fill our ears and our lives with so much noise so we can block out the reality of what God needs to say to us. We live in fear of conviction...instead of living with the

power of assurance that God is wanting to help us find the peace that passes all understanding and the JOY that was given to the world. Silence is golden they say, and in some ways I have to agree with them because only in the silence can we truly hear the power of God creative nature and the JOY of the chorus that surrounds us every day.

So today I reverted back to an Old Testament scripture to help us take a moment and really draw closer to connecting back with God. David is helping us to realize that we need to find a way to get back to the Joy God has intended for our lives. That when we were children, our lives seemed so much simpler in many ways. The JOY was the fact that we would wake up in anticipation of what the day would bring and with the excitement to concur new mountains that were in front of us. We found JOY in learning how to walk, eat, ride bikes, since, and even as babies when we found our fingers and toes and quickly shoved them in our mouths. We found JOY in every chance that we had to sit in our rooms and read stories with our families and as we learned how to pray in the simplest ways. David is asking for God to restore the JOY of life that has been covered and calloused with the chaos and uncertainty the world he was living in. David wanted to restore his heart to a time that nothing else mattered but serving and loving God. To a time where he was a shepherd skipping stones and defending the flock from predators. Life seems to find a way to steal our joy in so many ways, and I just wanted us to take a moment today to breathe.... and ask God to help us to find the JOY of a child that represents the key to enter into the presence of God.

So in the midst of the chaos and all of the noise... step back and witness the power of silence. I know that it will be uncomfortable at first because we are really not use to living in that way. We sleep with sound machines and TV's to help drown out the silence, but maybe... just maybe that is satan tempting us to not allow God to speak to us through the silence. Maybe we are still worried about what God is going to say or where God is going to

send us. Friends, I just want you to know that is the JOY of the journey. We hear multiple times that JOY comes in the morning and the main reason why is because God is able to infiltrate the darkness. God is able through the power of silence to restore our soul and renew our spirits in preparation for the day that we are about to encounter. I hope and pray that you really enjoy this time of year as we are moving towards 2021, but please look back over 2020 and really take in the JOY that God provided as we became more dependent on HIM this year than any other year of our lives. It has been one that we have called out like David to God to ask, "Please restore me to the JOY of my salvation." We have spent time questioning a lot of the things that we put in our lives that needed to be removed.. that is JOY. We spent time reconnecting like families more than we would have ever done if God did not give the time to stay at home and be a family free from work, school and the activities that drove our lives... That is JOY. But the biggest JOY still surrounds us in the moments of silence. In the times where many of us have found a way to reconnect with the living GOD and truly find peace, love and happiness. There is power in silence and we are in need of digging into those moments and asking God, Lord, Here is your servant, what can I do. May you really take time every day of your life to sit in the silence and take in the power of the JOY God has surrounded us through HIs creation. I pray that we get rid of all of the noise of the election, the pandemic and really spend time just basking in all that God has done for you in your life. JOY has come and we have been given power through silencing the chaos and spending that time reconnecting to the ultimate giver of life.

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