October 29, 2020
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We live our lives with certain expectations, so it is always a surprise when the unexpected happens.

In 1959, we were in the United Kingdom for three weeks. During that time, we spent a day trying to find the resting place of my wife's paternal grandfather. Eventually, we located the church where his grave is. The rector told us that he is buried in the new church addition that was added only two hundred years ago. The original church, he added nonchalantly, was built in the 1400s!

Wow! That was unexpected! We were from Canada where any structure constructed over a century ago is considered old.

Years later, our teenaged son was able to spend some time in London, England. He returned just thrilled with all the wonderful old buildings, museums, and historical sites. It was unexpected, and he only wished that he had been able to spend more time there.

When one of his friends returned from a similar trip, he unexpectedly reported that London was really boring. He said that the sports facilities were not as good as in Canada and that the city was really just full of old buildings! Same location, contemporary people, but totally different results with different expectations.

Jesus specialized in the unexpected. He fed thousands with a meagre lunch. The stormy waters suddenly turned calm at His command.

1 Thessalonians 5:2 – For you know quite well that the day of the Lord's return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. (NLT)

As we live in this COVID-19 pandemic, I think that we all face a challenge to be like Jesus and to do the unexpected. We are limited in how we can interface with our families and friends; we have to wear a mask whenever we go out; we can't meet and sing heartily in large gatherings and church services; and we don't know how long this different way of life will continue. The expected response when we have interchanges with others is to share how upsetting this terrible virus is, and how disruptive it is to the things that we normally enjoy doing.

The challenge for me and, indeed, for each of us, is to do the unexpected and ensure that each interaction that we have with another person is positive, helpful, and uplifting. We do have Jesus' example of loving and helping others. We, of all people, should be the ones filled with confidence and hope, knowing that our loving Sovereign Lord is fully in control of our situation.

Prayer: Dear Father, in this time of uncertainty, may we be willing and eager to do the unexpected. Help us to realize that others may need our positive love. Help us to share Your love with others. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Vincent Walter <vwalter@bell.net>
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouragement, Vince. Be safe.

    A good challenge, Vincent. Thanks for reminding us.

    This is really good, and I appreciate you writing this bro in Christ. Take care where Jesus cares and carry on.

    Thanks, Vincent, for the unexpected pleasure of revisiting memories of my trip to England and for the lesson drawn from your experiences. Blessings.

    Vincent – another uplifting and helpful devotional. Thank you, God, for allowing Vincent to share his Christian wisdom with us through the gift of this devotional.

    Great post and so timely, Vincent. The longer covid goes on it is more difficult to be uplifting to others but it is so needed. Thanks for the important reminder!

    Mr. Walter
    I truly am blessed by all your devotionals you have submitted, and I look forward to seeing more of your writings. You are making a difference, you are valued, and I appreciate you and your work very much.

    Hello Vince,
    Good advice. Yes, during this time of uncertainty and much isolation it is really important to connect with others in a kind and caring way as the Lord would do.
    Blessings for the special writings you submit.

    Dear Vincent,
    Today’s devotional was just so positive and a good reminder of how a change of perspective can put a positive light on a situation that we are all experiencing. It is a good encouragement to be positive and encouraging and thereby provided an “unexpected” outlook to our current global situation in order to lift others up.
    Stay safe and blessed!

    Dear Vincent,
    I really enjoy your devotionals. I loved the different experiences of the two young people visiting London, England. Maybe because your son has family from England so there would have been discussions in your home about England, his perspective was very different or maybe he just likes old things like some people fill their houses with antique furniture and others fill their homes with modern furniture. May you be blessed with many positive thoughts to pass along as you enjoy your house mates.

    Hello Mr. Walter, thank you for your wise and inspiring devotional today. I am trusting, hoping, and praying that I will remember its message through this day and many to come.
    In fact, I want to compliment you on all your devotionals which I am always grateful to read. You have obviously lived and long and interesting life and continue to be a blessing to your readers and to the persons in the building where you live as well as your family, I am sure.
    It seems you have a large family, and I am sure many friends. When this covid thing has passed I would love to meet you in person for a coffee.
    Once again, thank you and may God bless you in all you do.

    As we help others, we feel more positive ourselves.

    Dear Vincent,
    This is a very different time with ever-changing rules and regulations to keep ourselves safe from Covid-19; and to keep others safe too. Remembering the stress is not all about us, we can look compassionately on others and lift them up. Thank you for doing something positive for we readers.


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