Advent: Creative Waiting – Joy

December 4, 2018

Advent: Week 3

Week 3 Theme: JOY

Where do you find joy?

You are welcome to use whatever creative medium you like- art, crafting, writing, music, collage, photography, poetry- surprise us!- to share how you experience joy in the season of Advent.


Suggested sources of inspiration:

Scripture- Philippians 4:4-7

Quote – “Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads”. Henry Thoreau

Poem – “Remembering that It happened once……” a Christmas poem by Wendell Berry

Music – Hymn to Joy, Ludwig Beethoven

Hymn, “Joyful, joyful we adore Thee” – tune as above, text by Henry Van Dyke



Where the First Parish Community sees Joy:


Who is Coming?

The crowds are gathering
In the snowy park.
Excited children run
And laugh with glee.
The happy sound of tinkling bells
Are heard in the distance.
Hear it? Can you hear that!?
Asks a jubilant child.
He’s coming! He’s coming!
Shouts another.
There he is! They exclaim as one!
Happiness and hope and love fill
The hearts of all.

~Ruth Thibodeau


A few haiku for JOY

the scent of cut pine
permeates the living room:
make the Yuletide gay

from the suet cage
a downy woodpecker sneaks
December tidings

engaged completely
in stillness and listening:
the winter-bound pine —

pines dusted by snow:
treats topped with powdered sugar
on a Christmas plate

~Jason Gould



When I sing or listen to this chorus, I feel like I am soaring into a wondrous space beyond anything I know or understand.  I think that sums it up, as it is not easy to describe joy, but you know it when it arrives.

~Donna Baughcum


Joy – Philippians 4:4-7

~Marty Dome


What Gives Joy

What gives me joy…

Family: Husband, daughters, grandkids, great grandkids, extended family;

Friends: high school, college, church, work;

Clients: brave, independent, humorous, grateful, kind, storytellers, loving; My life and heart is filled with joy during this season and all year long!

~Ruth Thibodeau


Tail-flapping Joy

In November Jack installed a new bird feeder right outside our living room window.  Bruce, the cat, discovered it immediately and claimed the window sill with the view as his own.  Since then Bruce has left his perch only to eat or use his litter box.  When a bird comes to the feeder, Bruce is elated.  He flaps his tail up and down, making slapping noises against the wall.  If a whole flock appears, he flaps in double-time.  He can’t contain his joy.  Like a child waiting for Santa, he sleeps with one eye open…just in case.

Bruce’s flapping tail reminds me of the cartoon Snoopy who dances on his hind legs when he is happy.  It seems animals in general including cartoon ones and little children have little trouble expressing joy.  Sometimes we adults do.

Last Sunday as the Cantata ended I felt like jumping up out of the pew and shouting “Bravo! Bravo!”  In the good old Congregational tradition, I restrained myself.  But if I had a fluffy tail like Bruce’s, that tail would have been flapping double-time.

~Nancy Collins


Wedding Day

My little sister got married last Saturday in Chatham, MA. She and I were both much too excited to sleep in on the day of the wedding. Around 5:30 am we both found ourselves peeking over at each other and whispering, “You up??” “Yeah, me too!” just like we used to as children on Christmas morning. So, we got up and made some espresso, and then sat together in the bay window to watch the sun rise on her wedding day. It was such a lovely moment of peaceful, unhurried anticipation before the busy-ness of the festivities got started- a snapshot of quiet joy that I will always remember.

~Jessie Crabtree

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