Going Home

today’s daily water is written by Mary Stout

“When the angels returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, ‘Let’s go right now to Bethlehem and see what’s happened. Let’s confirm what the Lord has revealed to us.” They went quickly and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. When they saw this, they reported what they had been told about this child. Everyone who heard it was amazed at what the shepherds told them. Mary committed these things to memory and considered them carefully. The shepherds returned home, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. Everything happened just as they had been told. (Luke 2: 15-20 CEB)

The Saturday before Christmas I became very dizzy and nauseous. This lasted a while, so it was pretty scary.  I felt I needed the professionals to check me out, so away I went to the hospital. A few hours later they came in and said they needed to keep me overnight for observation because one of my heart enzymes was slightly elevated. I burst into tears because I knew that meant I had to miss Christmas Eve services at The Well. As I waited for a room, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God was in charge. After all, He got me to the hospital to get good medical care. As I wrote to my pastor, I asked him to have the church pray for healing. #Pray801 was in full force after that. I felt all the prayers and love the church sent me the whole time. I knew that no matter what happened that I was indeed a Child of the King. I could still praise him from the hospital…although it does not feel the same as worship in church. My heart for Jesus was filled with a sense of peace and love so strong that the sadness I felt dissipated quickly.

When I woke up Christmas Eve morning, I prayed the church would have a great worship time. I could imagine the angels coming and hovering over The Well, worshiping with the congregation in adoration to the new Baby Jesus. I imagined as I prayed each person taking Holy Communion and could hear the sounds of worship and realized that my heart was with you.

Sometimes God gives us challenges to face that we are afraid of.  Just like the shepherds being afraid of the announcement of the Christ child, I was fearful of what was happening with me. As Christians we learn to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path (Prov.3:5-6 NIV). I trusted, prayed and waited on the Lord.  I felt that pure peace of Jesus permeate my soul, and I bowed my head and said, “thank you.” That’s precisely when they said you can go home. I was happy to know I was well. Happy to have received Holy Communion with Mark’s family, happy to know I belonged to God and He had seen me through. He helped me see that I belong not only to Him, but I belong to the community of Love we have at The Well.

Now won’t you join me and go out just like the shepherds did glorifying God and telling of the Christ Child? Let us join together as this new year approaches, spreading the gospel and sharing the Good News to all men!

Prayer: Father we thank you for bringing us through the rough spots and into communion and community with you. May our lights so shine before men they see You in all your glory. In Jesus name. Amen

To God be the Glory,

Great things he has done

So loved he the world that he gave us his Son

May the peace of God surround you as the new year approaches,

Mary Stout