In a recently discovered letter of C.S. Lewis as reported in The Guardian (article by Alison Flood, Dec 9, 2014), Lewis wrote of how; “real joy … jumps under ones ribs and tickles down one's back and makes one forget meals and keeps one (delightedly) sleepless o' nights”. The article further spoke of Lewis’ belief that joy is infinitely more than any amount of pleasure one could experience, and once tasted, is forever sought. It was joy that brought Lewis to his knees to pray as he finally accepted Christ and Christianity in his life.
Throughout the Scriptures joy is most often connected with exuberant praising of God: making a joyful noise to God! This too is my great experience of joy especially when I am singing in choir; joy is simply something which must be shared. In the gospel according to Luke we have that beautiful image of the angel appearing to the shepherds on the hillside and saying, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people.” (Luke 2:10) We know that the shepherds immediately left their flocks and went in haste to see that which the angel announced: our Lord Jesus newly born into the world. After their visit, as they went they told everyone what they had seen: they shared their joy.
What rib-tickling joy have you experienced in your life? With whom and how have you shared your joy? Share some experience of joy with another this Advent season as we await with eager anticipation for the joy of the world in Christ Jesus, our Saviour.
– Sr. Elizabeth Ann Eckert, SSJD