Advent begins—and in fact, the entirety of the Christian journey begins—at the point where we accept Jesus as our Guide and begin to walk with his calm assurances in the midst of our fears. He’s going to meet us, he tells us. He’s going to show up, even if we don’t know when or how. Jesus even invites us to look for his presence in the lives and faces of others. He may come to us at unexpected moments or when we are most tired or worn or confused. He may show up at the beginning or appear at the end of all things, when we least expect God’s redemption or grace.
—Todd Outcalt, Let Us Go Now to Bethlehem: Daily Devotions for Advent and Christmas (Upper Room Books, 2020)
When has Jesus shown up in a situation that was fearful for you? When have you noticed his presence in other people? Join the conversation.
When evening came, [Jesus’] disciples went down to the lake, where they got into a boat and set off across the lake for Capernaum. By now it was dark, and Jesus had not yet joined them. . . . When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus approaching the boat, walking on the water; and they were frightened. But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.”
—John 6:16-17, 19-20 (NIV)
Prayer for the Week
Creator God, as you have made all things, I know you are still creating in me too. You are not finished working on me. Thank you for your patience throughout the seasons of my life, and I pray that I may offer beauty, comfort, relief, joy, and strength to those I encounter today. Help me to rely upon your counsel through all of the adversity of my life. Amen.
—Prayer by Todd Outcalt
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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