After days of rain and grey dreary skies, this was my view from the front porch this morning. The weather app on my phone had predicted rain all week so this break in the clouds, this glimpse of blue skies, this arrival of sunshine was unexpected...a delightful surprise!
I know all surprises are not "delightful" or even welcome...I've experienced a few of those myself. Yet, when you wake up anticipating another rainy day and the sun breaks through, I can't help but feel happy. For several years I worked in the GI department of the clinic, in an area that had no outside windows. Believe me, there was no danger of anyone looking in from the outside during the dreaded colonoscopy procedure! Due to our windowless area, we never knew what the weather was doing unless someone told us. And when we heard the sun was shining after a stretch of rainy days, we would often run down the hall to open the door and look out...even just for several moments. We didn't want to miss it!
Enjoying this unexpected good weather, I opened my email. Yesterday in my post about the beginning of Advent preparations, I neglected to mention that I am also reading an online devotional that gets sent to my email inbox daily called Waiting In Expectation, from Today Devotionalpublisher ReFrame Media. The devotional for today was based on Jeremiah 29:11, "I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." The author of the post, Bill Sytsma, said, "...most people missed the first advent of Christ because God carried out his plans in very unexpected ways."
"How then can we be sure that we don't miss the hope of God this Advent season? Many times, the Christmas season can be packed with overly busy 'to do' lists, or even worse, with deep sadness due to loss. We may not feel hopeful, but we we must recognize that God has a plan for us. God is daily transforming ordinary events and difficult trials into key moments that help his plans prosper. He is not out to harm us, but the dark moments we experience can be part of the most important lessons to help us grow nearer to him."
So, as these Advent days continue, let's be looking for unexpected ways that God is speaking and drawing us to himself.
A song that captures this sense of how God loves to come in "unexpected ways" is Mary, Did You Know? LIsten and sing along...
The fall decor is finally put away and some Christmas boxes are coming out today, but I'm going to get outside for a while too! Warmly, Gracia