Daily Advent Reading by Rev. Melanie Kim-Hamill

Psalm 16 (You are invited to read the brief chapter in its’ entirety)
Focus on verse 11:
“You show me the path of life.
In your presence there is fullness of joy;
in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

In late 2013 Pharell Williams, Music Producer and Artist released the song “Happy.” By early 2014 it topped the American Billboards as number one. Everyone went crazy for this song. This song was an international sensation. It stayed number one on the Dutch radio charts for 36 weeks straight. It was famously featured in the sequel to the animated film, Despicable Me. If you don’t know it, let me introduce you to this gift of a song. I dare you to listen and not start dancing. What made this song so popular?
Happy is defined as “feeling or showing pleasure or contentment” or “fortunate and convenient – as in She had the happy knack of making people like her.” Joy is defined as “a feeling of great pleasure and happiness.” Happiness and Joy are synonymously defined. For me, I like to make a distinction between Happy and Joy. I think that being happy is more of a mood and Joy is a state of mind, a spiritual principal, a philosophy, a way of being. Joy can coexist with other emotions. Joy is a deeper current, a truer state of Happy. The Psalmist says that in God’s presence, they experience “the fullness of joy.” Joy goes beyond our mood. I can be cranky and anxious, but I have the promise of something that is most true, which is Christ. As I try to push through the crankiness and anxiety, I know that joy comes in the morning. It is steady and reliable and can only be fully experienced in being with God. So, in order to be reminded of it, I might put on “Happy” and dance with my little one to be reminded of the goodness of Joy.

Lyrics to “Happy”
It might seem crazy what I’m about to say
Sunshine she’s here, you can take a break
I’m a hot air balloon that could go to space
With the air, like I don’t care, baby, by the way

(Because I’m happy)
Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof
(Because I’m happy)
Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth
(Because I’m happy)
Clap along if you know what happiness is to you
(Because I’m happy)
Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do

Here come bad news, talking this and that (Yeah!)
Well, give me all you got, don’t hold it back (Yeah!)
Well, I should probably warn you I’ll be just fine (Yeah!)
No offense to you
Don’t waste your time, here’s why
Bring me down
Can’t nothing bring me down
My level’s too high to bring me down
Can’t nothing bring me down, I said

What is your definition of Joy?

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