Advent Devotion 12-01-20

Advent Devotion for Tuesday, December 1 by Katie Stapleton

Today's advent devotion was written by Katie Stapleton, granddaughter of Dan and Kitty Stapleton.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?

Why so disturbed within me?

Put your hope in God,

for I will yet praise him,

my Savior and my God.   -Psalm 44:5

Change has never been easy for me. That’s because for most of my treasured life in Denver, Colorado, things didn’t change. At least, my atmosphere felt stable. And so I was able to live freely, a life of security. But in 2015, everything I knew fell away. I moved from a nature-embracing, four season state to the swampy heck that people, for some reason, yearn to live in: Florida.  I won’t hide it. I hate it. Still do. The first night I entered our new house, I broke down. Slowly I learned to adapt, or did I?

In Junior year, I think I realized I had not only left my life behind in Colorado, but I had left myself behind. I didn’t just adapt, I realized my prided innocence was gone. I was seeing the world from different ways and while it’s great to have different perspectives, I felt terrified I’d never be who I was. That nostalgia morphed into depression, a sadness so dark I had to invent a new word to describe it.

I felt like a character in my favorite book series. Just… the painful part where they have to stomach the change, not the cool, inspiring hero they became. But that was a platform, a springboard. I could see myself in these characters who endured so much yet admitted their wrongdoings. I jumped off the springboard and God caught me. I intertwined His presence into just… life. I drew Him hugging me, ensuring me that everything would be okay. My camera shifted so that God got more of the spotlight and slowly, things got better. It’s hard to let go of the past, especially right now as my grandparents move from their adored log cabin. *Pauses for an accusing look* But change is necessary so that we can be better people- so that God can shape us and use us to spread His Light. It hurts. But it gets better. It gets better because of God. So whenever you find yourself lost or shrouded in darkness, turn to God.

From the darkness, it seems hopeless. But it gets better as He helps you overcome your barriers- mental, physical, emotional. Sometimes our souls will be downcast. We’re human. We’re not perfect. It just happens. But when it does, put your hope in God. His glorious Light will cast out the darkness. He will hug you. He will whisper in your ear, “It’s okay. I’ve got this. I’ll walk you through your valley, because I love you.”

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