They seem like opposites, but they are connected.
A bridegroom who woke to his wedding day joyfully and then wept over the end of his childhood, only to end the day he called the "greatest day of his life" with overwhelming joy.
Without a sense of loss, we will never fully understand joy.
"The joy of the Lord is my strength."
-- Nehemiah 8:10
Life is hard, but even in the mess of it we can rest in our identity with God. There is joy and sorrow in the end-of-life journey.
When people hear "hospice" they feel like it is "giving up." It has a sense of sorrow. What we know, and get to share with others, is that the joy we receive in our work far exceeds the sorrow.
Joy is ours despite circumstances when we serve others. No escapes the outcome of death, but we can bring joy and comfort to patients and families.
"Whatever you do for the least you do for me."
-- Matthew 25:40