Is anyone else struggling to get through this current season of end-of-school, almost summer but not quite, craziness? I feel like I need to schedule a two-week recovery period to catch up on all the sleep I’m missing (mostly because I’m SO EXCITED about “Holy Hustle” and all God is doing with it and I’m like a little kid on Christmas morning!).
At the beginning of the school year Madi would come home to cute little snacks prepared and ready for her at the kitchen table. Now she comes home, plops herself in front of Garfield, and eats a Popsicle. Mornings were a sweet time where we would sit at the table and read a Bible story while we listened to music and she ate her breakfast. Now I’m lucky if I can convince her to get dressed before she leaves her room, brush her teeth before school, and I usually find half-empty yogurt drinkables on the window sill of our living room.
This is a special time.
But there are some really fun things happening too. Like the message I got to give at church on Sunday (you can watch/listen here), the book fair, field day, kindergarten celebration day, fun day, book launch party plans, finding out that LifeWay is going to carry my book (eek!), finding out that the audiobook is available AND on sale, and the countdown to an actual vacation. AT. THE. BEACH. Mostly I’m just having a blast sharing about “Holy Hustle” and hanging out with my launch team. I might be biased, but they’re seriously the best. I kind of want to keep them and have them hang out with me all the time.
Anyway, on to this week’s sneak peek of “Work Hard, Rest Well.”
Read: Luke 1:26-55
The Bible is full of wonderful examples of faithful men and women who remained obedient to God in good and bad times. This week, however, we’re going to take a look at what happens when our daily obedience – those simple moments of “yes, Lord” – result in surprise blessings. Jobs that we never thought we wanted suddenly become the work we knew we were created to do. Children we never dreamed of having suddenly become an answer to a prayer we didn’t know we needed. Opportunities that fall through suddenly create space for a joy-filled moment we might have otherwise missed. And who better to study this week than Mary?
I don’t know about you, but I’m not usually a fan of surprises. I like to know what’s going to happen, when it’s going to happen, and how I’m supposed to dress for the occasion. I nearly ruined my husband’s proposal because I was so caught off guard, and I never know where to look or what to do when a group yells “surprise!” as I walk into a room.
It’s pretty likely that I wouldn’t have responded to Gabriel’s news the same way Mary did. But Mary’s faithfulness and her habit of daily obedience to God gave her the courage to say, “May it be done.” And so, she invited God to surprise her with an unexpected blessing that would change the world.
- Read today’s section of Mary’s story and list the surprises that occurred because she said “yes” to God’s plan for her life.
- In verses 46-55, Mary worships God with a song, thanking Him for inviting her to be a part of the story He was writing for humanity. Rewrite Mary’s song into your own words, with your own story.
- List anything from this week’s readings that have helped change how you view surprises. When the unexpected happens, how will you respond differently next time?