Advent Devotion - Day 5


December 1, 2022

Join us through this special time of Advent as we dive deeper into the Word of God. Each day, we will pray and reflect on a different passage from Scripture. Daily Readings are from the Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, and reflections are written by our church staff.

Opening Prayer:

Father, we thank you for being our God and showing us the way. We pray that our hearts and our minds will be open to your word. As you bless us with opportunities to serve you, we ask that we will be courageous when you call upon us. This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Scripture Reading:

Acts 1:12-17, 21-26 (NRSV)

12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day’s journey away. 13 When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying: Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of[a] James. 14 All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.

15 In those days Peter stood up among the brothers and sisters (together the crowd numbered about one hundred twenty persons) and said, 16 “Brothers and sisters,[b] the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit through David foretold concerning Judas, who became a guide for those who arrested Jesus, 17 for he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry.”

21 “So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 22 beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us—one of these must become a witness with us to his resurrection.” 23 So they proposed two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also known as Justus, and Matthias. 24 Then they prayed and said, “Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which one of these two you have chosen 25 to take the place[a] in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.” 26 And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias, and he was added to the eleven apostles.


Sometimes we set into motion something that we were unaware of at the time it happened.

I remember a time a while back when I was working for a large company as a mid-level manager. We were in the process of adding another layer of management to our business, a position above me that I thought would be perfect for me to step into. Unfortunately, and to my surprise, it was shortly announced that we would fill the position with someone from outside our company. That was a solid hit to pride. Even so, I was determined to try my best to be a team player.

After several months, the new manager (who is now my direct report) and I were becoming close friends. As a result, I was becoming aware of several areas of his responsibilities that were lacking. He eventually confided in me that he had oversold himself to our department head in order to get his current job. So, while he was a very good motivator and had good leadership skills, he was rusty in the academic skills needed to fully perform his job at an adequate level. That was when it became very clear to me why I didn’t get that promotion. God had another plan for me. God was going to use me to oversee and help my new friend to sharpen his academic skills in order to keep his new job. It wasn’t easy, and it was a lot of extra time, but it worked out. My friend went on to excel and became a high-level leader within our organization.

So, while Peter led the process to fill the vacancy of Judas with Matthias, he probably wasn’t fully aware of the important step that was taken. By fulfilling this important task, it also eventually led to the emergent coming of Paul and all his important travels.

Daily Challenge:

God can use us at any time to help him do special things. Hopefully, you will be able to hear him when he calls on you!
Today's reflection is written by:
Steve Johns
Church of the Servant
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