Advent Devotional - December 5

December 05, 2019



"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all."  – 2 Corinthians 4:17


The year 1992 was proving to be a happy and joyful one after a tumultuous move from California to Kentucky two years earlier. We had just celebrated our eldest’s high school graduation. I was thankful that we had found an encouraging church family and I was teaching VBS. God was blessing me beyond measure.
In early June my world was rocked by my sister’s call that my mom was having a stroke. I needed to come now. My heart stopped and all the joy ran out of me. Lord, I want my life to go back to the way it was five minutes ago, but … there was so much to arrange before I could leave.
During my drive I switched between blaming God for the trouble that appeared in the middle of my happiness and praying that my mom would live. After finally arriving at the hospital I found that the doctors were able to stop the stroke, but they didn’t know how much damage she had suffered. She was facing a long rehab.
Each day brought more news, some good and some challenging. My mom’s determination and hard work brought her closer to independence. Mom and Dad began attending and participating in church activities. Had my life changed? Had joy returned? Certainly, but I also realized that life’s troubles are temporary. I don’t walk alone through troubles or happiness. My hope in Jesus reminds me daily of the eternal glory that awaits.

Janette Van Laningham
Florence UMC
Northern Kentucky District