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love - 4th week of Advent

The raunchy movie Love Actually makes a culturally radical claim: Love has almost nothing to do with sex. If you want to witness love, the voice-over announces, hang out in the Arrivals Area of any major airport anywhere in the world. Read More…

joy - 3rd week of Advent

Weddings are joyful events, everywhere and in every culture. This past weekend we attended a wedding in a foreign country…Texas. It was pure joy! 

Joy is the outward expression not of emotion, but of a deep and abiding character quality. Happiness is a valuable emotion, a feeling—and its fun to be happy. But joy is different. Joy is an expression that bubbles up from a deep reservoir of satisfaction, peace, contentment, love, confidence, belonging and optimism. One reason weddings are joyful events is that guests gather in anticipation of witnessing an outward expression of a deep and abiding love between a woman and a man.
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peace - 2nd week of Advent

When diplomats talk they often reference “conditions that make for peace,” or some similar phrase.

We live in a culture that fervently believes peace can be negotiated. That systems can be put in place which will break down the obstacles to peace: injustice, lack of access to resources or opportunities, bigotry, selfishness. Historically, however, peace has seldom been achieved through negotiation. Occasionally a kind-of-peace has been won via conflict; sometimes with great violence—as in 1945. But other times with less violence—America's fight for civil rights and South Africa’s overthrow of Apartheid.
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