Good News, Great Joy!

Waiting for Good News

When COVID-19 swept the country wreaking havoc and destruction, my friend Alicia—a full-time caregiver, wife, mom, and medical assistant—was overwhelmed. Her mother had been suffering with multiple medical issues including heart failure and dementia. Alicia wanted to keep her mom at home as long as possible, even if it meant practically moving in with her, but ultimately, she had to make the difficult decision to place her in an assisted care facility.

In the midst of the pandemic with all the restrictions and lockdowns, Alicia was unable to see, hug, kiss, or whisper assurances to her mom. Standing outside her mom’s window, their hands pressed against the glass, desperate for connection, tears rolled down both their cheeks.

When her mom passed away, she was alone in her room.

No funeral or memorial service was permitted to help Alicia ease the pain of her loss or celebrate her mom’s good life.

It. Was. Awful.

Alicia, an extrovert by nature, now alone in her grief, was swallowed up by discouragement in her isolation.

Months rolled by, the snow melted, robins appeared, and crocuses sprouted.

Restrictions on travel eased, and Alicia’s four daughters conspired a simultaneous visit.

When Alicia arrived home from work that afternoon, the girls were positioned in front of the garage door, waving streamers and bopping balloons.

I wish I had a picture of the visible relief on their radiant faces as happy tears streamed during the jubilant reunion.

Good news revives us.

In Genesis 45, Jacob had suffered the loss of his favorite wife, Rachel, and their son, Joseph.

Jacob’s grief was so heavy it contaminated his joy for decades. On top of that, a famine came to the land, the likes of which had never been seen. Jacob was distraught and ready to die.

When his sons returned from a second trip to Egypt where they had gone to buy food, they brought with them the news that Jacob’s long-lost son Joseph was alive and in charge. And “the spirit of their father Jacob revived” (v. 27).

Can you imagine?

Finding out the son you’d given up for lost was alive and eagerly waiting to see you! “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life,” says Proverbs 13:12.

Good news revives our spirits.

You don’t have to endure a pandemic or suffer the loss of a family member to understand grinding grief and discouragement.

 

It’s Advent Season

December is here and we are getting ready to celebrate the birth of Jesus.

What good news..the BEST news…of GREAT joy–that He has been born, lived, died, and is alive now to walk with us through every season. Forever.

I don’t know what you may have given up hope of ever doing…

…or seeing

…or experiencing again

BUT

I do know that God…

  • sees you
  • hears you
  • and has good news for you.

You are not alone and you are not forgotten.

 

May the peace of Christ reign in your heart this week as you prepare for party season. His birth *is* good news of great joy, friend.

 

Verse

How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”

—Isaiah 52:7

Prayer

Lord, your Son is Good News, and I thank you for Jesus’ gift of salvation. As I await his triumphant return or my departure from this world, sprinkle good news into my everyday life to refresh my hope and deepen my trust in you this season and all year long. In Jesus’ name, amen.

6 Comments

  1. Carol Kerry on December 3, 2023 at 8:00 am

    Robyn, I loved today’s message. I just wish I could send your message today to my friend. She needs it desperately. Is there a way I can send it to her. My friend Debbie, her sister Cynthis and myself saw you in Jackson, Michigan. You were wonderful.

    • Robyn Dykstra on December 5, 2023 at 5:42 am

      Hi Carol- thanks so much for your comment. Absolutely! You can email her the devotional or send her the “Seeds of Inspiration” devotional book set. Love, Robyn

  2. Margaret (Margie) Leive on December 3, 2023 at 2:49 pm

    Hi Robyn
    I ENJOY your messages and today’s was ENCOURAGING, UPLIFTING, INSPIRING AND ANY OTHER POSITIVE ADJECTIVE ONE CAN NAME!!! THANK YOU !! May God CONTINUE to BLESS YOU and ALL that you do to share HIM, HIS LOVE, and HIS GIFT OF SALVATION..

    Sending LOVE, HUGS, AND PRAYERS

    • Robyn Dykstra on December 5, 2023 at 5:43 am

      Margaret, thanks so much for your comment. Isn’t God so good? Love, Robyn

  3. shelly on December 4, 2023 at 9:08 am

    Thank you for this…as I enter the holiday season and the first part of every year I am reminded of a time long ago where my 3 children were all killed in a house fir while I worked. The holidays bring memories, their birthdays in the first 3 months of the year and then March 3, the tragic day–December and the beginning of each year are hard for me but made easier by your stories. Thank you!

    • Robyn Dykstra on December 5, 2023 at 5:44 am

      Shelly, I am so sorry for your loss. Trusting that our God of All Comfort will wrap you tightly in His arms this holiday season and always. Love, Robyn

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