Daily Devotions
 

Welcome to Good Shepherd’s Daily Devotions Page!

Welcome to the Season of Advent.  This is a season when we read from the Apocalyptic or End Times writings in Scripture.  Jesus encourages us to stay awake and watch for his coming.  John the Baptist appears, calling for a way to be made in the wilderness, ready for the Messiah to come.  The color of the Season is blue, like the pre-dawn color of the sky, full of hope and expectation that a new day is coming.  

Advent is a season for preparing, which is what we will be doing through these daily devotions, which were written by Pastor Heidi Johns.  As we travel these four weeks leading to Christmas we will be preparing our hands, homes and hearts for the coming of Christ.

Pastor Heidi Johns

Daily Devotion
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

Daily Devotion

Tara Chapin

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.” -C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves

I love C.S. Lewis. His words somehow stick to me when I read them, which is why I’m sure he’s such a legendary Christian writer and philosopher. The quote above is my all-time favorite. I think of it often when I need encouragement. I thought about it last weekend when I found out that an acquaintance of mine from high school lost her 7-year-old son to complications of asthma. My heart sank when I first heard. I imagined what it would it must have felt like to sit with him through the night, watching his little body sleep, attached to so many tubes in a quiet, sterile hospital room. Nothing but the beeping sound of the machines keeping my son alive in my ears. I imagined the moment she and her husband had to make the terrible decision to stop those machines. The thoughts were almost too much. I cried for a child I had never met. And yet, they were nothing compared to the grief his parents are surely experiencing. Having 3 children of my own, the mere thought of losing one is soul crushing.

And what is love, if it is not to be vulnerable? To love our children, spouses, family members and friends with such depth is to show them our whole heart, bare and open, and to trust them with it. Is it worth it to love so deeply? When loss (multiple losses) is always guaranteed in our lifetime? Yes, of course it is. Because the alternative is a life without the gift that love gives us. These deep connections, unconditional and unrelenting, are what make life worth living. They are gifts from God. Even if we only have them for a short time. 

Being a Christian requires practice in vulnerability. It is risky. It takes bravery to be vulnerable and love without fear of loss or rejection. But we know God wants us to live our lives to the full and to know this kind of love. Deep, like an ocean.  Today I will meditate on how I can boldly practice vulnerability in my life. How can I show my children that I’m not the superwoman they think I am, but just a woman who loves them endlessly, and tries really hard? How can I show my friends and family what my real life looks like, messes and all? Because when it’s all said and done, living authentically and cultivating those bonds is what God has always wanted for me. It’s a small taste of his kingdom here on Earth. 

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2 comments on article "Daily Devotion"

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carol wuebbling

Tara, you've expressed what every parent knows: profound love of our children leaves us endlessly vulnerable. But you've spoken with a Christian wisdom too, and that's powerful stuff. Thanks for your passion


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Danelle Buelsing

Tara, your reminder to embrace the relationships in our lives with genuine love and openness is beautiful. Thank you!

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