God in unexpected places

Date: Monday, December 23

ScriptureMicah 5:2-5a

Verse: But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days. (Micah 5:2)

Sometimes I get surprised by God. There was that time in the gym when a random stranger told me I was doing well, at a time in my life when I was feeling pretty insecure, not at the gym, but in other areas of my life. There was this other time when someone in a car congratulated me for having climbed a hill on my bicycle. Little did they know I had been feeling like my life was an uphill climb all week. Other times a friend has made an off-hand comment that meant the world to me because of things in my life of which I didn’t think they were aware. I choose to believe these are ways God speaks to me, and maybe you. It doesn’t always happen during my devotion time, Bible reading, worship, prayer, or any of those expected places. Sometimes God shows up in the places I least expect to see him. 

We begin this Christmas week with what had to be at the time of its writing, surprising news. Kings aren’t supposed to come from “little clans,” from powerless families. They are supposed to be descendants of former rulers, the powerful and wealthy. One might have expected this future ruler to be a Levite, of the priestly class. Or maybe to be born in Jerusalem, where the political leaders resided. Instead, Micah prophesies he will come from Bethlehem. 

But then again, maybe it is not all that surprising. Throughout the history of Israel, God seemed to use the ones not entitled to the inheritance. Isaac was Abraham’s second son. Jacob was younger brother of Esau. God chooses David to be Saul’s successor. David was not Jesse’s eldest, but the youngest, and small at that. God has a history of working through ordinary people and showing up in unexpected places. Maybe you have heard God’s voice or felt his presence from an ordinary person in an unexpected place. 

Maybe better news is you have the opportunity to be that person for someone else. 

Prayer: Thank you, Lord Jesus, for your presence even when I’m not expecting it. Amen.

Action: Listen for God’s voice speaking to you today in the voice of another, or the nudge of God to say something to another. 

Respond: Has God ever spoken to you in an unexpected way, in an unexpected place? Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below. 
If you are receiving this via email, click the title at the top of the email to take you to the devotion webpage where you can leave a comment.


About Joe Iovino

Christian, husband & father, Associate Pastor in Monument CO, guitar player, motorcyclist, Mets fan.
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