One of my favorite quips is to tell people I have no first name—I am named for my uncle (Robert Benjamin Weaver), and my grandmother (Ruby Allen Holloway Weaver). So, I have two second names, but no first. I share this distinction with my second daughter who bears the middle names of both my sister and my wife’s sister. When Little Bit was born, we wanted to honor our sisters, but we also wanted to give her a name that could influence her demeanor. And so, like her aunt, her middle name is Joy.

It is a fitting name because of the joy she brought into our home on the day of her birth. It is further fitting because of the exuberant way that she lives life. Her gusto for living every moment to the fullest reminds me of the other reason that we named her “Joy.” And that reason is to remind us of the joy that can be found only in Christ—and it is one of the greatest gifts of Christmas. We are reminded again at Christmas and can echo the words of Barney Warren’s old gospel song:

I have found the joy no tongue can tell,

How its waves of glory roll!

It is like a great o’erflowing well

Springing up within my soul.

      It is joy unspeakable and full of glory,

      Full of glory, full of glory.

      It is joy unspeakable and full of glory;

      Oh the half has never yet been told!

(verse 4, taken from The Celebration Hymnal, 1997, #740)