The Joy that Finds Us

Published by AV Coordinator on

The Joy that Finds Us, by Rev Elea Kemler, read by Jessica Wirges. This sermon was first delivered at First Parish Church, Groton MA.

Moment of Perspective – AJ Fox – Behind the Scenes: Church Decisions, Values, and COVID-19

The opening words are Joy is Hard, by Rev Joe Cherry.

Joy is hard.
Joy requires us to feel safe enough,
to be safe enough, to open to vulnerability.
To feel joy, you must be brave.
Joy walks into a room after the space has been cleared
Cleared of shame,
Cleared of doubt
Cleared of self-recrimination.

Joy is hard.
Joy is hard
and joy is worth the hard work of preparation.
Preparing oneself and setting down all the defenses
all the shoulds and could’ves,
all the should not haves and might haves.
Joy is worth the work.
You are worth the work.
You can start small:
the simple pleasure of your favorite tea,
the grand freedom of a full belly laugh.
Invite Joy to be your companion.

There’s a Star in the East
Traditional African American Spiritual
Public Domain

When All the Peoples on This Earth
Words: Anonymous
Music: Betty Jo Angebranndt
Permission Granted
Performed by the First UU Choir

In the Bleak Midwinter
Words by Christina Georgina Rossetti
Music by Gustav Theodore Holst
Performed by Mary Alexander, Marideth Sisco, Paul Phariss and Rebecca Holt

The closing words are On the Brink, by Rev Leslie Takahashi.

All that we have ever loved
And all that we have ever been
Stands with us on the brink
Of all that we aspire to create:
A deeper peace,
A larger love,
A more embracing hope,
A deeper joy in this life we share
.

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