Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "How Firm A Foundation"1 (Lyrics)
Psalm 119:132 – Turn to me and be gracious to me, as is your way with those who love your name. (ESV)
The other day, I accompanied my husband to an early morning appointment with his eye surgeon. As he presented himself at the counter, I looked around for a good place to sit. My eyes were drawn to a row of six or seven empty chairs. Strategically, I sat down on a seat in the middle, soon to be joined by my husband. I looked forward to a quiet time of waiting, with ample opportunity to let my thoughts wander freely.
It was not long until an elderly lady entered. Like myself, she scanned the room for the best seat and took a few seconds to decide. After all, there were many empty chairs. Then, with a sense of purpose, she sat down right beside me. And she did not ignore me either. To the contrary, she immediately opened the conversation with a remarkable statement: "I am sure you kept this seat for me."
No, I had not, and I was looking forward to a quiet time. But I also remembered that the ways of the Lord are sometimes unexpected. I could not just dismiss the lady's words as small talk. Maybe the Lord had a special conversation planned for us.
The lady was ready to talk. She began by stating her displeasure with all those in the room who were engrossed with their cellphones. She told me that she still drove her own car in spite of her eye troubles. She asked me where I lived and expressed her gratitude for good houses and good roads. Meanwhile, I was waiting for a profound message or for an opportunity to share my hope in the Lord. But no. The conversation went on to eye drops and the dreary days of January.
But on the way home, my eyes were opened. Suddenly, I realized that although I had been waiting for a great revelation or an opportunity to witness, instead, the elderly lady herself was a picture of the Lord's way with His people. He finds us wherever we are and prompts us to talk to Him. As today's verse says, He turns to us and is gracious to us, as is His way with those who love His name. He is involved in the seemingly small things of our lives. Graciously, He corrects our disinterest and makes us aware of our blessings. He uses unexpected moments to redirect our glance to Jesus, the light of the world.
Prayer: Dear Lord of sight, we thank You for revealing Yourself to us. Help us to recognize Your grace when You reach out to us with Your Word. Help us to experience Your gracious nearness when we meet with You in prayer, and help us to reflect Your light of grace into this darkened world. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.