“In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels when even one sinner repents.”Luke 15:10
At our family gathering just before Thanksgiving, I attempted to demonstrate an old Victrola I inherited from my Dad years ago to my son’s in-laws. As I cranked the record player, I told the story of a Christmas gift I bought for Dad – a stack of antique 78s and Dad’s genuine joy in the gift. I’ll need to watch that old Christmas video again.
As I thought about God’s joyful gift of Christ to us, I turned to the three parables of Christ in the fifteenth chapter of Luke – the lost coin, the lost sheep, and the lost sons. Near the end of each of the stories, Christ painted a picture of the excitement experienced in the presence of God when just one person repents and turns toward God. The woman threw a party and invited her neighbors to celebrate the discovery of her lost coin. The shepherd did likewise and when the younger son came to his senses and returned to the Father we read these four simple, but descriptive words – They began to celebrate.
You may open a wonderful gift or two. You may give a couple of memorable gifts, but it all pales in comparison to the scene in heaven when we receive God’s gift of salvation. It is pure joy.