We got the news on Monday, and it changed all our plans for this Christmas holiday.  In our case, it was Karen testing positive for coronavirus.  With one test result, everything we thought we were going to be doing over these holidays changed:  togetherness turned into isolation, travel plans canceled, and emotions getting hit hard…on top of dealing with the actual sickness!

 

Many of us at Mercy Hill are experiencing similar challenges—sickness in our own homes, or other relatives canceling their holiday participation.  All of it dealing disappointment at a time when we were anticipating refreshing, comfort and joy.

 

I want to remind you that hard times are God’s time!  Scripture shows us that God appears in the midst of trouble, not just in its absence.  In my own life, the most profound encounters I’ve had with God occurred in moments of disappointment, when my plans were frustrated and I turned my face towards the Lord.

 

The most important things in our life have not changed.  Jesus Christ is our living Savior, and God is at work by the Holy Spirit, forming us into the likeness of Jesus Christ.  In our disappointment, God beckons to us, inviting us to seek his face.  Let us respond as the Psalmist does:

 

You have said, “Seek my face.” 

My heart says to you, “Your face, Lord, do I seek.”

                                                                        (Psalm 27:8)

 

Let this disrupted season be a time when your heart agrees to seek God’s face.  He’s nearer than we realize, and he invites us to come close to him.  Pause intentionally and acknowledge Him.  Make an offering of your disrupted plans and damaged hopes, and invite Christ to inhabit more fully the temple of your heart, your mind, your body, and your home.

 

Keep your eyes on Jesus, and have a Merry Christmas!

            

—John