Moravian Church in North America

In Essentials, Unity; In Nonessentials, Liberty; In All Things, Love.

Moravian Church in North America
North: Bethlehem, Pa.
South: Winston-Salem, N.C.

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Weekly Moravian Message: December 24, 2017

Fourth Sunday of Advent

Relentless Joy

Joy. O Joy, all joys excelling. Joy of every longing heart. Joy to the world! The candle of joy should burst into flame spontaneously, so powerful is the joy of this day—and the anticipation of tonight’s high and holy commemoration of Jesus’ birth.

But there can be no joy without unconditional love. There can be no joy without the unceasing hope for God’s better days. There can be no joy without an abiding peace the defines all our relationships. Joy, the most sought-after prize in this Christmas season, cannot exist without the other three.

But what kind of joy? Unsolicited joy? Matchless joy? I would like to offer “relentless” joy.

I know few things or people that are truly relentless. We all need a break. We all have our limits. We all relent in the face of confrontation or fear or doubt. Even the machines we build to be relentless power down, glitch, freeze, cease up, and eventually fail us.

Which is where Immanuel meets us . . . and meets us with a relentless joy, the joy of a Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth. How many times has Jesus sought us out like a shepherd searching for a lost sheep? How many more times will Jesus bind up our injuries, belay our fears, soothe our heaving hearts? How joyous are those moments—how absolutely and relentlessly joyous!

This morning we complete the lit circle of unconditional love, unceasing hope, abiding peace, and relentless joy, because we know that the fulfillment of these is realized in the birth of Jesus Christ, the Light of the World, the Lover and Savior of us all.

Kerry Krauss, pastor, Moravian Church,

Sister Bay. Wisconsin

Moravian Daily Texts


Wednesday, March 21 — Psalm 37:34–40
Exodus 27:1–28:14; Matthew 25:14–30

God said, “By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Genesis 3:19

As all die in Adam, so all will be made alive in Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:22

God of compassion, you have told us that you care for the poor and abandoned. We confess how little our hearts share this concern. We see very little beyond our own needs. Today, help us change. May we see you in the least and the last. Amen.

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