Joy Advent Reflection, 11th December 3rd Sunday of Advent (See our prayer pages for more daily suggestions of prayer). Christ comes to bring joy to listeners like *Nadif, living in a place where turning from the majority religion is difficult, who has finally trusted in Jesus Christ: “I want to tell you something, but it must be kept extremely secret between us. Last night I prayed a lot, and I finally decided to follow Christ. I asked him to have mercy on me and forgive my sins, and amazingly I felt immediate happiness deep inside my heart. I believe that Jesus Christ is my Saviour, and I am ready to submit to him for the rest of my life. Please don’t tell this to anyone. I felt joy after I believed in Christ. I used to deny the existence of God, but now I have changed my mind and I believe in God.” Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer Romans 12:12 Joy = a deep down conviction that all is well, in spite of difficulties. Joy goes way beyond feeling happy. It is a God-given gift which gives us assurance that God is in control, therefore all will be well. This deep rooted belief gives us security and grounds us so that whatever our circumstances, we can keep trusting God. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy Psalm 94:19 Pray for new believers: Pray for new believers, particularly those who have come to faith in secret. Give thanks for the radio programmes which help them to grow in their faith and overcome the isolation that they often feel. See also: This Week in Prayer for daily prayer requests.