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God in the Unexpected

Today’s Reflection

Finding God in the Unexpected

I FIND GOD in the unexpected,
the unexpected places
where I least expect to find
the presence of the Living God.

It is in these unlikely places
that the undeniable sense of
holy-overwhelming arrests my attention.

I find God in the unexpected,
the unexpected times
when I would rather
wallow around in the muddle of my mind
and rehash old, unresolved issues.

God pierces through the wall of my wailing
and shines glory on my being
so I can see a new path,
a new direction,
a new purpose.

I find God in the unexpected,
in people whose lives seem so fractured.
Yet they, like shards of a mirror,
reflect the image of God so clearly
and profoundly
that God becomes flesh again.

I find God in the unexpected,
those situations that seemed trivial:
a passing comment,
a line from a movie,
an image on a screen.
Serendipity turns spiritual in unguarded moments
because God chooses to speak to me
through the unexpected.

I find God in the unexpected.
Slowly, I’m beginning to learn
to expect God – in the unexpected.

The Africana Worship Book, Year C

“God in the Unexpected” by Kwasi Kena. From pages 56-57 of The Africana Worship Book, Year C, edited by Valerie Bridgeman Davis and Safiyah Fosua. Copyright © 2008 by Discipleship Resources. All rights reserved. Used by permission. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Where have you encountered God unexpectedly? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Then Peter came and said to him, “Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times.
Matthew 18:21-22, NRSV

This Week: pray for those affected by natural disasters. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.

This week we remember: Catherine of Genoa September 15).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2017 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

{ 8 comments… add one }

  • Lou September 16, 2017, 12:45 am

    Everyday if I am listening and awake to Gods message- I encounter Him in all places and in all people-
    It is when I become so consumed with myself and the trappings of this world that I loose my way and do not see Him. It happens more often than I would like to admit
    More of you- Lord…
    Less of me.
    Your Grace surely is sufficient-
    Prayers for all recovering from recent devastating floods and earthquakes and senseless acts of violence.
    Prayers for all who are lonely, in pain of any kind, grieving a loss, struggling to find direction. You are the way the truth and the life. Holy Spirit breathe on us-Amen.

    • Lou September 16, 2017, 12:47 am

      Excuse my many typos- it is too late…

  • Louise September 16, 2017, 4:51 am

    Lou I agree with you! When I am awake and listening God talks to me but when I am consumed by the trappings of the world it is harder to hear God. I am blessed to work with beautiful children and a wonderful group of teachers everyday. God speaks to me daily through them. When the world’s trappings start to infiltrate my thoughts I try to take a moment to focus on God. Some days it is harder than others but the important thing is that the refocus happens. I pray for all who struggle mentally, physically, and spiritually. I pray for those cleaning up and trying to pull their lives back together after bouts of devastating weather. I pray for those in London who suffer from another terror attack. I thank God for my family, my friends, and the UR. Without support and prayer the powerful trappings of the world would take over. God help me to be the best version of myself that I can be today.

  • robert moeller September 16, 2017, 5:28 am

    From someone who constantly questions the existence of Jesus and God, I was surprised at an offer to help me prepare this Sunday’s fellowship hour snacks. There’s God in the unexpected!

    Prayers for my landlord-neighbor who lost his wife on Monday. She was 67 and about to retire.

    Thankful always for the UR and all who come to read and or post. God sent God’s word into the world that it would achieve its purpose before returning to God. We are witnesses to this here at the UR. Thank You, Lord.

    Prayers for people under attack, facing natural disasters, mourning, suffering, hungry, homeless, in need, lost and without a sense of direction or purpose. Lord in some way we all need You. Thank You, Lord, for Your ever presence.

    Thankful for the comments of Lou and Louise, the comments yet to come, and the comments of earlier days. Through them God sustains us.Peace be with You.

  • Jill September 16, 2017, 5:31 am

    Yes, Lou and Louise – I, too, feel like I need to be “tuned in”, ready to receive Him however He chooses to reveal Himself. Being able to trust in the mysterious ways that He works. Not trying to orchestrate, but to remain vigilant and about the tasks He has given me to do. To look expectantly, while at the same time, keeping my hand to the plow.
    The interactions and the bonds that are extended and growing here surely brings delight to Our Father. Thank You for making these connections possible, Father. These, too, are likely unexpected. Yet such blessings flow in each direction.
    Grateful for a beautiful weekend of weather in store. My mom and I are planning on attending an outdoor arts and craft festival today. So looking forward to church tomorrow – grateful for the warm people who welcome me there.

  • Carol September 16, 2017, 5:48 am

    Thank God that this is true. He is working His will out for all of us. I can’t help myself but He will and does.

  • Julie September 16, 2017, 8:09 am

    Yes, I believe I see God in the unexpected gathering of so many believers here. I believe that He brought each of us here to perform His purpose. Each is here to give and receive what is needed. He ochestrates every small detail of our lives for His ultimate good.
    I also have noticed that if I reflect on any given moment of a day afterwards, that I never fail to find that God’s handiwork is evident. I tend to notice less in the actual moment, but it is evident in hindsight. So even my spiritual hindsight is 20/20.
    Blessing to all the people who voluntarily put their lives on hold and go into disaster areas to bring aid to those in need. Keep them safe, Lord.
    I greet everyone here today with a hug of spiritual support.

  • Marcy September 16, 2017, 9:12 am

    Yes, I find God in the unexpected when I stand on the balcony and am amazed all over again at the beauty of nature in all it’s seasons. Thank you, God, for Your creation.
    I find God when reading Scripture and unexpectedly find new insights in His word, no matter how many times I’ve read the same words before. Thank you, God, for Your enlightenment.
    I find God in the unexpected when I look back on my life and see how many times there was only one set of footprints instead of two. Thank you, God, for carrying me.
    God, thank you for the programs that make healthcare, housing, food and receiving enough to live on for all those in need. Unexpected for me because I never had to depend on these things before, was afraid I’d be homeless, but You always provide for us, God.
    I even find God when my tabby cat unexpectantly makes me laugh out loud at her antics. Thank you, God, for giving us our pets who show us love, but also dependence, like we depend on You.
    Most of all, I found God in the unexpected when I was led to this circle of the UR family. You are all so accepting, wise, prayerful to strangers/newcomers, making them/me feel welcome and at home. You are all helping those who are just reading, maybe fearing to reach out. Thank you all for prayers and thoughts.
    Julie, thank you for your words of encouragement, helping me through the hills and valleys, hope I can do the same for you if you need me!
    So thankful to God for my church Pastors, keeping in touch with me, making sure all is well. This, however, is not so unexpected!
    Praying for everyone dealing with devastation and heartbreak due to circumstances beyond their control. God is in everyone responding in many different ways in return. And Lord God, we need not fear anyone but you. You are with us, always. You will never leave us or forsake us. With you, God, all things are possible. Amen.

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