December 17, Sunday

 

Today’s AMI Devotional QT is provided by Jasmin Izumikawa. She is a member of the Church of Southland and is currently a high school teacher. She has lived the miracle of healing through the prayers of her AMI church family through her battle with lymphoma.

 

Devotional Thoughts for Today

Flower of Hope

Psalm 62:5

“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my Hope is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.”

There are times when everything looks very grim to me—so withered and dead that I have to remind myself what the garden looked like during the peak seasons. In the winter, we see very little growth, but to have a thriving garden in the spring and summer, it is necessary to wait with hope. When we see no bud of growth, we trust knowing what it will become, for a garden is built from hope. This empty lot of soil will be full of blue Hyacinth and yellow Ranunculus in the Spring, and in the warm summer, full of heirloom tomatoes and crisp cucumbers. In my waiting, that is what I hope for.

There is a delicate flower that grows in late winter snow at the first sign of spring. They are called Snowdrops for they look as though they are shaking off drops of snow from small bright green stems. Did you know that many types of Spring flowers need to encounter cold months and frost in order to bloom in Spring? Planting bulbs such as hyacinth and tulip may look silly to others because we plant hundreds of them below the soil and for months, we go out to the patch of dirt, waiting and hoping for the first pop of green to emerge from a sea of brown.

In a similar way, there are times in difficult seasons of our lives that we must “trust also in Him; [for] He shall bring it to pass” (Ps. 37:5). Hope implies that in spite of all the difficulties, in the face of death and grim seasons, we trust and believe that we will, in time, encounter renewal and abundance again. The ground will break open, the scenery will change, and the end result will be full of God’s love and peace for us. Yes, “the hope of the righteous shall be gladness” (Prov. 10:28a).

Prayer: Dear LORD, You have made even waiting beautiful and patience so sweet. You teach me that Your grace and Your plans are good. Give me strength to wait in hope-to look at my reality with peace and trust even when there are no flowers in bloom. Even when my joy seems to be buried deep, give me the strength to walk with You even in the darkest night and say, “In You, LORD, I can hope in the waiting.” In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Jeremiah 51

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