Last week, my post was entitled “Joy to the World.” I wrote about the joy Jesus brought to the world during His earthly life and the joy we can experience now while we await His return. Since then, I’ve been singing and thinking about the lyrics from the Christmas carol “Joy to the World.” One phrase says, “Let every heart prepare Him room.”1 Have our hearts prepared Him room?
How do we prepare Him room? First and foremost, preparing Him room means inviting Him to be our very own Savior. When we invite Him in, He will come to dwell with us and will forgive us of all sin. He will stay with us through the entirety of our lifetime, helping us, guiding us, and comforting us; and He will prepare us a place in heaven.
After we have laid that foundation, our hearts can undergo a remodel that makes even more room. We can make room for thoughts and behaviors that are in alignment with His. We can do things that matter to Him and please Him. For example, think about the New Year’s resolutions we have just made—are they all about us or all about Him? Are we focused on what to do for ourselves and how to make our lives better this year, or are we focused on letting Him remake us and give us the best life possible? Will we follow His teaching? Obey His commands? Give of ourselves, time, and resources for the sake of others? Essentially, will our lives be filled up with ourselves or filled up with Him?
We talk about advancing our careers, losing weight, getting in shape, accomplishing some goals, beginning new hobbies, going certain places, making more time for ourselves, and organizing the closets. But are we making room for Him to guide us into the careers for which He created us? Do we make good choices to care for the bodies He has given us? Do the goals we want to accomplish consist of temporal things or eternal things? Will we go anywhere He asks us to go? Are we investing our time sacrificially or spending it selfishly? Have we organized our lives so that we have gotten rid of the junk and made room for Him? Are we making room to love God and love others?
These are some things to ponder as we journey into this new year. What we make room for matters. Preparation begins in the heart, with our core, with who we want to be…and whose we want to be.
I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart;
I will tell of all Your marvelous works.
I will be glad and rejoice in You;
I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.2
“Joy to the World! the Lord is come; Let earth receive her King; Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room, And heav’n and nature sing.”3
1 Watts, Isaac. “Joy to the World.” 1719.
2 Psalm 9:1–2
3 Watts, 1719.
Scriptures taken from the New King James Version of the Holy Bible, ©1982 by Thomas Nelson.
©Text and photo Francee Strain, January 9, 2022