Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "My Jesus I Love Thee"1 (Lyrics)
John 14:16-17a – I will ask the Father, and he will give you another to be your Advocate, who will be with you for ever — the Spirit of truth. (NEB)
Last Sunday during the worship service in my local church, our pastor was preaching about the importance of sharing our faith with one another. At one point in his sermon, he stepped down from the pulpit and began to walk slowly down the centre aisle. Then, he asked if people were willing to share how the Holy Spirit was working in their lives. After listening to several stories, I knew that I wanted to share my story, but I dislike speaking in front of a large group, so I decided to share it with you, the readers of PresbyCan Daily.
Prior to that moment, I considered that what had been happening to me was a coincidence. Now, I see it as the work of the Holy Spirit. My story starts in January of this year. I had been writing devotionals every other month for my local church's website. Suddenly, I couldn't get my messages through to the person who posts them, nor could she get any messages back to me. The computer system in the church office had been changed, and there were many glitches that had to be ironed out. By mid-February when my devotional was due, I was still unable to communicate with the office. I became quite frustrated and was on the verge of deciding that I wouldn't write for a while. It was just a matter of days later that I received an e-mail from Robin Ross, the Submissions Editor of the Presbycan Daily. I had had no contact with Daily other than as a reader since the year 2010. Robin's message was asking me if I would consider coming back and writing for the Daily page again.
I explained that I had stopped writing in 2010 because I needed to undergo four eye surgeries for my failing vision, and the necessary healing time between surgeries had made reading and writing nearly impossible for that whole year. After my eyes were healed, there was no reason not to start writing again. I just hadn't done it. So I considered coming back to Daily.
Then I read that PresbyCan Daily was celebrating 20 years of publishing devotional messages online and that the daily readership was now up to 6,200. Wow! That really scared me. I thought that I didn't have anything to say that would merit that large an audience's attention. I tried for several days to press that send button, but each time, I drew back and put my message on hold while I prayed for another day.
Finally in March, I felt able to share my first message. What a blessing it has been! The day my message was published, I received responses from people who remembered me from the early 2000s. People that I had never heard from before sent comments as well. Each message was uplifting and encouraging. Now three of my devotionals have appeared on the PresbyCan Daily page, and I have heard from readers in countries that I have never heard from before. I had no idea how many people in different countries were receiving these daily devotionals. Many of the places were surprising to me. One person even sent a picture of himself and his daughter saying that he read my devotional to her. Another message came in a language that I could not translate. Another requested permission to republish on their website.
Now, I am so pleased to be a part of Daily's new decade of publishing devotionals. My pastor's words couldn't have been truer. It is important for Christians to share their faith with other believers and to have them respond in kind. I truly feel that I have linked my faith with Christians around the world. There is no feeling quite like that anywhere!
Has something happened in your life that made you say to yourself, "Wow! What a coincidence!"? If so, look again, even if it scares you, like it did me, because it just might be the Holy Spirit guiding you in a new direction.
John 16:13 – When he comes who is the Spirit of truth, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on this own authority, but will tell only what he hears; and he will make known to you the things that are coming. (NEB)
Prayer: Thank You, Lord Jesus, for sending the Holy Spirit to guide us as we go through our lives, supporting each other in our faith. Amen.