All who heard the shepherds’ story were “amazed” (Lk 2:18) We have become so familiar with the advent story that it has often lost its ability to “amaze” us. What do you think was so astonishing to those who first heard the story? In what sense was the story “good news of great joy”? Is it a story of “good news of great joy” for you?
What is the difference between news and advice? What response does hearing news demand? How does that differ from our response to advice? Do you view Christianity more as good news or good advice? Is our culture more comfortable with viewing Jesus as a Savior or as a wise teacher who offers good advice? Why?
“When one truly understands the incarnation, joy will be an inevitable consequence.” Do you agree with this statement? In the midst of our fallen and broken world is it possible to live and experience “great joy”? Is your life marked by joy?
This “good news of great joy” is intended by God to be shared with ALL people! What social, religious, and racial barriers did Jesus’ incarnation tear down? How are you doing at being an ambassador to ALL types of people? Are there any barriers in your life that you need to tear down in order to bring great joy to others?