Advent - Wednesday, December 20th

By Gena Stone-Phillips - Wednesday December 20, 2017

Joyful Optimism

     This is my favorite time of the year.  From Thanksgiving to the season of Advent you can usually see a twinkle in my eye, a smile on my face and a song on my lips. For me this feeling of joy comes almost every year and transcends age and circumstances.  2017 has been a challenging year filled with uncertainties not just for me but for the country.  I can't help but wonder if I will have adequate health care coverage after I retire.   I watch CNN and wonder if a war with North Korea is inevitable?  There are mass killings, wildfires and hurricanes, global warming; these are uncertain times in which we live.  As we prepare to celebrate the birth of our Savior how can we not be optimistic?  We have only to believe in his saving grace and trust him in the practical matters of life. I will put away the worries and uncertainties at least for a season.

     Mary was chosen to give birth to our Savior and her circumstances were unusual to say the least. I am sure she had real concerns and faced uncertainty in her time. What am I going to tell Joseph?  "Where can I have this baby”?  But rather than worrying about people's perception of her and how she was going to cope, Mary sang her song of praise "My Soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices for the Almighty has done great things for me and Holy is his name”.  Mary magnified the Lord, and proclaimed his greatness even in the midst of her disgrace and uncertainty. 

     We too can be joyfully optimistic because God has never failed to deliver on his promises.  God cannot lie; he is all powerful and able to do all that he has promised.  In the best or the worst of times, God is ever faithful.  He delivers on his promises and is worthy of our total praise.  Let us rejoice and magnify the Lord.


    Heavenly Father, you are in charge of everything that will happen in my life today—the good and the bad, the positive and the negative. I banish uncertainty and surrender my will to you so that you can lead the way.


Gena Stone-Phillips
Co President, Ohio Women's Ministries

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