Continuing with the Advent candle theme, the third candle represents joy.

If you’re familiar with the Enneagram, I’m a “7 Wannabe.” 7’s tend to have a sense of optimism, freedom and adventure. They’re full of life. Joyful! They make up 14% of the population.

(Actually, I’m a 3 with a 2 wing. Not exactly an epicurean by nature…)

If you’re not familiar with the Enneagram, it’s a personality test, but suffice it to say that there are some people who just find joy easy to come by. I’m so jealous. I don’t jump out of bed in the mornings with a “Stand back world, I’m coming through!” attitude. (I just head straight for the coffee pot…) But after I wake up, so many things bring me happiness—music, friends and family, accomplishment (remember, I’m a 3!), hiking, writing. And did I mention coffee?

Ultimately, however, my ticket to deep joy is peace within. Inner turmoil + happy distractions don’t add up to joy, at least for me.

A theme seems to be developing in musing about the hope, peace and joy candles. I don’t think we should wait for hope to dawn on us. We can find the source and put our hope there. We shouldn’t wait for peace to become the absence of conflict. We can find it in the midst of conflict. And we shouldn’t wait for joy to show up only when we’re happy. There’s something deeper…

For me, this is all a God thing. I guess that’s what Advent’s about in the first place.

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