Christmas Devotion – Dec. 26: Exceeding great joy!

“When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.” Matthew 2:10 NASB

This verse is describing the reaction of the Wise Men as they left Jerusalem and once again saw the star they had been following for 2 years but had lost sight of when they entered into Jerusalem. How disappointed they must have been when they entered the capital city and lost sight of the star they had been following for so long. They felt led by God to come and honor the very special king born in Israel. But now what were they going to do?

Can you relate to their disappointment? Have you ever thought you understood the plan only to find it turned upside down? Then, like the Wise Men, you can understand that sick-in-the-stomach confused feeling. I have been there several times myself.  But what do we learn from this story? God is ALWAYS faithful. The Wise Men’s disappointment turned into “exceeding great joy.” When these guys saw the star again their excitement returned and intensified. They got the opportunity to join in the heavenly joy proclaimed by the angels at Jesus’ birth (“I bring you good news of great joy”). You can understand their excitement. You experienced it during the last two days as you celebrated Christmas. It doesn’t matter how old you are — the joy of Christmas is contagious.

We have reason to have “exceeding great joy” because God has been faithful to us and will continue to be throughout our lifetime. We are going to work hard at not letting the world, Satan, or our own sinful nature rob us of the joy that Jesus came to bring. We will strive daily to respond like the shepherds did that very first Christmas as they returned “glorifying and praising God for all that they had seen and heard.”

May this “exceeding great joy” be yours today … and every day!!!!


Pastor Tom

About the author: Tom Donnelly