2021 Advent Devotional: In the Midst of Changing Ways – Many Gifts, One Spirit
Week 2: The Gift of Faith
Scripture: Philippians 3:9 – “Not having a righteousness of my own that comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God based in faith.”
Reflector: Beth Hayward
For most of my life, I have been a person who likes to be in charge. If a job needed doing, I volunteered. I know how to organize. I love to help. I like to see projects finished and things change – for the better. NOT the changes we have all experienced in the last eighteen months.
I have always been in control of my life – or so I believed. If I wanted to do something, I researched he project, planned the needed supplies, and got the job done. I have taught Sunday School, attended church and consider myself a Christian. My faith feels rock hard.
My faith carried me through a miscarriage, a mid-life crisis, the disaster of a failed business venture, a ski injury, rotator cuff troubles, tendonitis, and broken ribs. My faith helped me survive, but I still made plans and thought I had some control over my life. My faith supported me while raising young people being served by Attention Homes. My faith encouraged me to stay positive during scary overseas missions where I didn’t now the language.
However, NOW, when life has been completely turned upside down and all has fallen apart, I realize I am not in control. My husband has Alzheimer’s disease, and I can’t fix that. I can’t help him. I cry a lot, and I bother God constantly. Now I must lean on God.
Last October we had a scripture about Bartimeaus. He threw off his cloak and ran to Jesus, whom he knew could heal him. Jesus said, “Your faith has made you well.
I imagine the cloak that Bartimaeus tossed off as a metaphor for all the baggage that I have to discard before my faith can shine again. I must forget my control, my selfish needs, what I want to have. I need my faith to be ALL I need. My faith will allow me to heal if, as it did for Bartimaeus, I throw aside any idea of my being in charge.
Prayer: God, help me see your plan in all these changes, not my plan. I surrender my wants and wishes and ideas about life. Let Your light shine in me. Amen.