The Upper Room Devotion for Friday, November 3, 2023, was written by Barb Sanders of South Australia, Australia.
18 Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. 20 But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 23 “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.” 24 When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, 25 but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.
Matthew 1:18-25 NRSV
I have recently been diagnosed with a rare genetic disease that has severely affected my heart, and I am now in heart failure. I need monthly infusions in the hospital and often feel drained after these treatments. My busy lifestyle has been turned upside down. My future is uncertain, but it is in God's hands.
Sometimes we may feel alone or vulnerable and in need of an extra sign of God's presence. While reading my daily devotions one evening, after my monthly infusion, I came across these words, "Today may you be infused with God's comfort and love." The following day an amazing rainbow filled the skies around me. Surely these were both signs of God's never-ending provision, peace, and comfort available to us all. When we keep our eyes and hearts open, we will see the signs of "God with us" every day.
Thought For The Day
Today, I will open my eyes to see the signs of God's presence.
Dear God, we thank you for the assurance that you walk beside us every day. Help us to rely on you no matter what challenges we face. Amen.