Joyful Expectation | December 7

Joyful Expectation | December 7

“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8

Everything had changed in a moment.  It was three years ago and we were planning a big vacation to Vancouver Island, BC. We had been preparing for several months – now we would be going nowhere. “Gary, you need open heart surgery as soon as possible.”  Those words hit both of us like a bucket of ice water and we both gasped.  As the cardiologist began explaining the details, I could feel my own heart beginning to pound.  As an RN, I knew the risks and possible complications well – too well probably.   I began to pray silently, but my prayer turned into a painful internal wail.  “Why God; why now; why this way; we’re not ready; I’m not ready…”

It was a mercy that neither of us knew then what the coming months would bring with several more hospitalizations and a near fatal episode of acute heart failure before Gary’s heart troubles were over.   I think this betwixt time, between the first surgery and the recovery, was so much harder for me because I felt so alone.  Gary was the sick one; I was the well one.  I felt I had to be strong for Gary and keep myself very busy in order not to just fall apart completely.  This resulted in my being exhausted most of the time and fear plus exhaustion don’t equal peace or trust.  I know now that it wasn’t my strength or stubbornness that kept me from falling apart, but rather the prayers of friends and family and believers around the world.

In those weeks that added up to months, I had to stand on the faithfulness of God and trust that He really did have a plan in all of this.  In order to do that, Hebrews 13:8 became my mantra: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.”  Who He was in the 50 years since I had accepted him as my Lord is exactly who He is in the present and precisely who He will be in the future!  He has never failed us and He wouldn’t fail us now. 

A Christian author once wrote that our faith journey could be compared to standing in a spotlight on an otherwise totally darkened stage. While I am in the spotlight on that stage and the light stays still, I feel in control and want to stay there. In order to get me to move on, God moves the light.  I am now in the darkness with no explanation of the why. But I can see the light and if I am willing to move through the darkness I will again be in the light.

To me, the betwixt times are the darkness that helps me move toward the Light. Thank You, Lord that You are my Light.

by Sue Lewis

This post is part of a series of Advent Reflections – “Joyful Expectation”
Learn more about the series at

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