Trust When There Are More Questions Than Answers

Open Your Bible

Luke 1:26-38, Luke 2:1-19, Psalms 56:3-4, Isaiah 12:1-6

My flight was canceled—for the seventh time that day. What I’d planned to be a refreshing girls’ trip with friends had quickly spun into a stress-filled travel debacle. I had set my heart on this trip, buying a ticket guaranteeing (or so I believed) my passage from Point A to Point B. But the weather and the airlines had different plans for me. I’m not going to lie; it’s hard for me to stay positive when my expectations start falling apart. And based on the mood in the airport that day, I’d guess most people don’t react well to unwanted change.

A delayed vacation is such a little thing compared to, say, the unexpected pregnancy of a virgin. I used to think it was strange that Mary was afraid when the angel Gabriel appeared to her. He’s an angel, after all. Shouldn’t she be amazed or awestruck? While fear is hardly an uncommon reaction to encountering angels in the Bible (Matthew 1:19–25; Luke 2:8–20), Mary’s story leads me to believe that perhaps angels do not appear as the gentle, white-clothed, feather-singed, harp-carrying creatures we’ve imagined them to be.

Now try to imagine a young, teenage girl with such a formidable being appearing before her, saying that, while there is no logical or scientific reason she should be pregnant, indeed she is! This makes it seem quite natural for Mary to respond with fear and then disbelief. And so she asks the angel, “How will this be… since I am a virgin?” (Luke 1:34, NIV). It’s as if she’s asking, “This cannot be happening—can it?” Who hasn’t felt the same way at some point or another?

What’s unique about Mary’s reaction is that she moves from fear of the angel, to disbelief of the situation, and then on to obedience to her God. I don’t know about you, but I tend to move from fear to disbelief to frustration to defeat—only landing on obedience after a long internal struggle. But Mary doesn’t do that. She doesn’t tell God He will have to take her kicking and screaming into His will. Lo and behold, her betrothed Joseph follows suit—his heart moving from fear to disbelief and, ultimately, to obedience (Matthew 1:18–24).

I think the secret to Mary and Joseph’s faithful responses lies in their true identity. It’s significant that after the angel Gabriel breaks the shocking news, Mary quickly identifies herself as “the Lord’s servant” (Luke 1:38). She could have objected to God’s will, aligning herself with other identities instead, arguing, “But I’m a virgin!” or “I’m unwed!” or “I’m still young!” All of those things were true, but Mary’s truest identity came from her relationship with God.

When we fight God, could it be that we’re prioritizing another identity over the one He’s given us? In our hearts, aren’t we quietly saying that we want to be lord over our own lives, rather than abiding with Him as His faithful servant? Thankfully, we can gladly choose the role of God’s servant because we know the Lord is a far better and more gracious ruler than we could ever be to ourselves.

Instead of struggling against the good things God wants to do in and through our lives, let us imitate Mary’s reaction to a shocking and wild calling, saying, “May it be done to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38). Even better, let us emulate the obedience of Jesus Himself before His Father (Luke 22:41–42). Although fear and disbelief naturally arise, let us lean into the Lord’s calling with obedience. Only then will we find the peace that can only come from walking in relationship with the Most High.

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209 thoughts on "Trust When There Are More Questions Than Answers"

  1. Erin Thompson says:

    May it be done to me according to your word ❤️

  2. Ryan Dunn says:

    We find peace in the Lord!

  3. Dakota Woods says:

    I love this. My identity is that I am the Lords Servant. I give my circumstances in life right now to him to rule over.

  4. Brodie Craig says:

    My identity is that I am the Lord’s servant!

  5. Hilary Curneal says:

    I love that God knows us as humans. He knows we are going to feel fearful, afraid and confused. But he has provided ways for us to overcome that through him. Our trust and love in God can overcome any situation. He has built us to lean on him in any season and he will bless us even more greatly for doing so.

  6. Shianna Law says:

    For many years my husband and I have been trying to conceive. I was always so scared to go see a doctor. But yesterday I finally did and it was a great experience. I would continuously find myself asking for for guidance but I would never listen because he wasn’t saying exactly what I wanted to hear. I finally gave into the voice I heard saying I can’t do it all, and yesterday my doctor and I came up with a 3 month plan that I have really really high hopes for ❤️ when in doubt just trust in the lord and give it all to him!

  7. Sarah Scheaf says:

    Great word. Obedient daughter is the identity I want to walk in!

  8. Zee Talley says:

    can i be honest? never rlly understood the song, ‘jesus take the wheel’ i for sure do now. i love that i can lean on the lord jesus and put my burdens on him for he is all peaceful amen

  9. Mollie Pittman says:

    Lord let me never question You, even with the impossible❤️

  10. Kora Kuenzi says:

    The other identities were true, but she chose to align herself with Gods will. And her identity with Him.
    So good!

  11. Amory Nelson says:

    Beautiful, help me lord to be obedient and never to question you when you tell me what to do.
    I just want to be willing and ready to work for you.

  12. Caitlyn Menard says:

    I love the part about Mary’s other identities being true, but her truest identity coming from her relationship with God and that’s what she acted on.

  13. Olivia Storteboom says:

    This was the first message in a while I have heard about Mary that wasn’t focused on the Christmas story. I loved it!!

  14. Emilee Tabor says:

    This was really good! I am reading this as I am recovering from getting my appendix removed, and I am just in awe of God once agin. Last week, I was on vacation at the beach. I had a great time, but I was also looking forward to getting back because a couple days after getting back from the beach, I was going to see my best friend…in Idaho! I was supposed to leave Thursday morning, but that didn’t work out. I ended up going to the er Tuesday night with very bad stomach pains, and the next morning I was in surgery getting my appendix removed. An hour surgery turned into 2.5 hour surgery because it was so inflamed & worse than they thought. With all that being said, I am just so glad that it happened when I was home & with family. A not so good situation actually turned into good timing. The Lord was with me & the surgeon during surgery and I am just so grateful & blessed that he was. I am so thankful that I am recovering with my family’s help. Things might not happen the way we want them too, but He has a reason for them to.

  15. Amanda Turner says:

    Lord help me to hear your voice in all things so that I am walking in your will and your identity always. Amen

  16. JKalah Furlow says:

    Help me Lord to be obedient and walk into the calling you have for me. Help me to not be afraid in Jesus Name.

  17. Carol McDaniel says:

    Moving quickly from fear to obedience! O Lord, help me so to do.!!

  18. Christine Lapp says:

    I definitely find myself prioritizing another identity over the one God has given me! I have never thought of it that way. I must now be aware of what identity I am choosing to follow in each situation and circumstance!

  19. kacie mcwhorter says:

    Slowly learning lean on Gods will and not my own. Praying he continues to guide even though my earthy self fights it

  20. Erin Kenny says:

    May I be a servant of God and may that be my biggest identity!

  21. Jodi Powell says:

    Mary’s transition from fear to trusting bravery is bold and powerful

  22. Quran Johnson says:

    Thank you Lord. Let your will be done.

  23. Ashara Perry says:

    Yea Lord! Let your will be done in my life and trust in the favor I have over my life ❤️

  24. Nicole Santana says:

    What a great study! Definitely gave me a perspective shift!

  25. Tara Stewart says:

    I love the way that was presented and I does make me think about how I choose the identities given me by this world over the identity given me by God, more often then I would like to admit.

  26. Kelsy Adhiambo says:

    Ooh, I am a faithful servant of the Lord, our God. I believe it, and I choose to walk in this great, beautiful identity!❤️

  27. Logyn Simpson says:

    God help me live for you and not for me.

  28. Andrea Martin says:

    Use me Lord without consulting me!

  29. belle ingersoll says:

    wow. wow. wow. ! what an amazing example of how we ought to reply to God && His calling for us!

  30. Bobbi Everett says:

    Trust the Lord and give Him charge of my whole life. Let Him guide me and do with me what He has asked of me.

  31. Melissa Salazar says:

    Help me to trust in you Lord and obey

  32. Olivia Mills says:

    This is a tough thing sometimes to submit to but God knows best for our lives and promises good for those who love Him.

  33. Liz Keller says:

    Help me to obey you Lord

  34. Alex Hessel says:

    Let my heart be obedient and say “May it be done to be according to Your word”.

  35. Caroline Hicks says:

    i loved that this devotion had us reflect on the christmas story. so often we as Christians “forget” about it throughout the year, it is so important!

  36. Sangita Hickman says:

    May God have Mercy and Grace on me as I transition from shock, from disbelief to obedience.

  37. Andrea Peters says:

    It’s hard to just say “Let it be as the Lord has said”. But there are blessings in that beyond any I can imagine.

  38. Allison Sherwood says:

    From fear to disbelief to obedience . . . such a beautifully human response from God-follower!

  39. Hayley Hayhurst says:

    This is such a struggle for me constantly- letting God lead my choices and path. So glad to have this devotion right when I needed it.

  40. Amanda Monk says:

    I’ve found myself countless times trying to force what I want to happen instead of trusting and obeying the plan He has so clearly put in front of me. This devotional was so good. Amen amen

  41. Dinah Coomes says:

    Obedience without fear or question is difficult for me…. But I’m going to work on it ❤️

  42. Lindsey Frans says:

    I never looked at this as an identity thing. They really knew who they were in Christ and they were really quick to obey. I can relate to the writer sometimes it takes me a while to obey. I have struggled with temporary truths about me and not the ultimate truth of my identity. This is so good.

  43. Kendall Degerstrom says:

    ❤️

  44. Frankee Jayne says:

    Thy will, not mine, be done ♥️

  45. Lauren Traver says:

    Love this❤️

  46. Chekwon Simmons says:

    Amen !

  47. Meredith Koelling says:

    ❤️

  48. Lora Janitch says:

    ❤️

  49. Alyssa Maxey says:

    Well that certainly hit home! God > fear and questions always

  50. Amanda Riedel says:

    Trust… one of the hardest things to do. I needed this study today as I face some hurdles and trials set before me.

  51. Kiarah Serrano says:

    This is so good! When you know who you are and you know who God, and especially you know who you are in God, trusting Him is made a lot easier. I think that sometimes i have to realize that God is so much more powerful than I perceive Him to be. He can move mountains if I just have a little but of faith ! God is calling me to have faith that He will move the mountains in my life :)

  52. Brittany Craemer says:

    I needed this today. Fear and anxiety have a grip on my heart. I crave the peace that comes from abiding and trusting in God!

  53. Naomi Edwards says:

    I also want to be my Lord’s servant!!!! ❤️❤️

  54. Cynthia McFarland says:

    This was awesome ❤️

  55. Kyrsti Harward says:

    ✝️

  56. Karen Tidwell says:

    So be it

  57. Ariel Martinez says:

    ❤️

  58. Sandra Ona says:

    ❣️

  59. Taylor Linville says:

    Amen ❤️

  60. Kris Dizon says:

    ❤️

  61. Bethany Johnson says:

    I really needed this

  62. kaylee townsend says:

    Good!

  63. Debbie Griese says:

    ❤️

  64. Elizabeth Cooper says:

    I’ve had a hard and trying day to where what I thought was my future may not work out. The Lord lead me to this study and this passage was exactly what I needed. Thank you Lord for these women and this message. Please pray for my current circumstance and for me to trust in the Lord and His provision.

  65. Maddy Harrouch says:

    ❤️

  66. Amber Ferguson says:

    ❤️

  67. Tricia E says:

    Amen Baylee and Anne! Well said!
    I was also struck by the words, “…but Mary’s truest identity came from her relationship with God”….SUCH an important reminder!
    Also…”let us lean into the Lord’s calling with obedience” despite naturally occurring fear and disbelief.

  68. Tricia E says:

    Amen, Baylee and Anne! “but Mary’s truesti

  69. Janice Nixon says:

    ❤️

  70. Baylee Bolinger says:

    In today’s society it’s so easy to find your identity in the latest fashion, how many likes on your post, your job title, a fluffy income. I pray that I can teach my children that we have everything we need in our identity in Christ. That it doesn’t come from the approval of others, a nice paycheck or a fancy outfit.

  71. Anne Stock says:

    “When we fight God, could it be that we’re prioritizing another identity over the one He’s given us?” Wow- that’s powerful. Thank you! May God help us walk from fear to faith and obedience.

  72. Kome Idollo says:

    Dear lord, let my fear lead me to complete obedience to you

  73. Cat Osterman says:

    Fear, unsurity… let it settle into faithfulness.

  74. Rhiannon Donovan says:

    ❤️

  75. Ayo falegan says:

    Wonderful this really hit home to me especially with me being a home bodied introvert I want to get of my comfort zone and serve the Lord.

  76. Rachael Kasprzak says:

    Love the focus on identity in the midst of trusting God!

  77. Tiffany Fairbairn says:

    ❤️

  78. Mela Ruiz says:

    This was such an insane passage. Really enjoyed it. I also can’t believe I never knew Augustus was in the Bible?! That’s so cool. I love how historical theBible is when you start diving deeper and commit to reading. The part of the devotional where the author touched on identity being a major part of our acceptance and trust in God’s plans hit me especially hard

  79. Katherine Santulli says:

    I love the note about trust being related to our own identity

  80. Sharon Jayaseelan says:

    Praise God

  81. Taylor Ferguson says:

    Praise God! I haven’t read the story of Mary and Joseph in years and I don’t think it’s ever hit me like it did today.

  82. Katie Key says:

    ❤️

  83. Victoria E says:

    Really eye opening, I admit I have not thought of myself too much as God’s “servant” as much as His child. I never thought of this identity very much but I love to be inspired by Jesus and His mother Mary’s example.

  84. Keirsten Rogers says:

    amen. Amen. AMEN. This was amazing…and I don’t think I’ve found myself relating to something so quickly and so heart felt. Whenever good or not too bad things happen to me I tend to find myself asking these questions…. “why me” “I don’t deserve this I’ve only been good” and “this wasn’t meant for me but for someone else” and while I’m working on this these verses and story really helped open my eyes. Mary and Joseph were frustrated yes but they got over that so quickly and obeyed. I struggle doing this but after reading this amazing verse and story I can say I will find myself working on this. AMEN

  85. Deb Ireland says:

    When I feel fearful I should move past that and step into who God calls me to be, a faithful servant. Mary and Joseph both went from fear to disbelief to obedience. I like how that was pointed out. I can do the same when I see myself the way God does…not only His servant but also His child.

  86. Emily Leonard says:

    I think most of the time I don’t think of myself as God’s servant. I’m more inclined to think of God a mutt servant, to do what I pray. But that’s not right. I am his servant.

  87. Faith Sanderson says:

    ✝️

  88. Christiana Rose says:

    The closer we walk with God, the more peace we will feel and the anxiety will melt away. Faith comes by hearing the word of God.

  89. Lydia W says:

    “When we fight God, could it be that we are prioritizing another identity over the one he has given us?” <- I think I fall into this category far too quickly sometimes. Lord, let me trust that the role you give me, is one I am called to embrace for the season. Lord, let your will be done.

  90. Carla Bellamy says:

    Amen!

  91. Dianna McFarland says:

    When God calls I want to identify inside myself and with my heart-wording that I am His servant and that I’m willing to be and do as He says and in His timing. Ready. Willing. To Be.

  92. Margeaux Hogue says:

    It can be exhausting but I’m learning to embrace obedience in the unknown and trust He will work it all out according to His plan for my life.

  93. Lindsay Capps says:

    Lean on Him! Relationship with God is what matters most

  94. Julia Rsn says:

    When it looks like God is wrecking our plans and breaking our like apart, let us identify as His humble servants, and let us trust in Him, because He has better plans for us. What He takes away, He replaces with greater things. ❤️

  95. Eileen Flynn says:

    God can do anything!

  96. Adrianne Margarito says:

    Fear is always my first response to just about everything, knowing God is there even in that is comforting.

  97. Lani Winslow says:

    ❤️

  98. Whitney Gibson says:

    Definitely needed this right now, I pray to have the same type of obedience as Mary even when my plans are completely shattered knowing that God has a GREATER plan for me.

  99. Caroline Mauldin says:

    ❤️

  100. Kayla Garrett says:

    As someone who struggles when things don’t go exactly as planned, I really needed to hear this! May my first identity be “as the Lord’s servant” and not to my own goals/ambitions.

  101. Kiara Kornegay says:

    This message was very much needed. I’m struggling to understand why God put me in a situation that seems to be hurting me and I almost gave up on the mission because I hated this feeling, but He told me plain as day to keep going. I don’t have all the answers, but I trust my Father more than anything❤️

  102. Fiona Dudley says:

    Thank you, Kaitie, for this post. I have found it so helpful and you communicate beautifully!

  103. addysn gillispie says:

    ❤️

  104. Sarah Miller says:

    I keep going back to the fact that I need to release control and trust in God’s perfect plan. I want to draw near to Him and obey.

  105. Eleanor McClain says:

    I think she was around 13 or 14… I can’t imagine having a kid at that age

  106. Grace Gangitano says:

    Does anyone know how old Mary was when she conceived?

  107. Jeannie Greenland says:

    This is such a life giving message! Grateful for this passage and commentary today. May we surrender all expectation and our will to the Father’s and find peace!

  108. Callie Dompier says:

    am trying to identify myself on my own terms, in the eyes of the world rather than through the eyes of God. God is not impressed by the things that impress the world, the worldly, and our culture. The word ‘great’ means something else to him. The word ‘humble’ means something else to him. The words ‘enough’ and ‘justice’ have different definitions when I try to look through the eyes of my creator. I am constantly constantly constantly evaluating myself by the harshest of metrics. And for what? So that I can forge my own path divergent from my identity in Christ. I think that’s all it is possible to accomplish through my concern about worldly usefulness, effort, or power. When I am not first defining myself by my relationship with God my efforts are outside of what they could better be under his perfect plan. God, help me to see the world through your eyes. Help me to see and value my life and work through your eyes above all. Thank you.

  109. Ashley Wiltfong says:

    Wow! So good!!

  110. Whitney Basford says:

    I agree♥️

  111. Hannah Gealy says:

    I think I was most impacted by the scriptures talking about thanksgiving and praising even when you don’t understand. I tend to live in the questioning and frustration instead of moving through it to a place of thanksgiving. What a good reminder

  112. Doreen Brutus says:

    So good ❤️

  113. Camila Paes says:

    I need to print this, frame it, and hang it on my bedroom wall !!! I’ve read this so many times and every time I feel so awestruck and at peace

  114. Kimberly Cummings says:

    In the Scriptures we read, I was struck by the connection between praise&thanksgiving and the move to trust and obedience. May Holy Spirit help me worship and give thanks today.

  115. Michelle Rosenberg says:

    Thank you so much for this message! Wow! Let us fall at the feet of Jesus while we rest in His perfect will! What a reminder. I tend to resist the negative so much, instead I need to recognize his perfect will in ALL because he IS the Lord of my life. Thank you Lord for your goodness!

  116. Eva Martinez says:

    In obedience to the Word of God, let His Will be done in my life especially during the times I think I got the answer to the situation I am facing!

  117. Amaya J says:

    ❤️❤️

  118. Tatiana Schweibenz says:

    I needed this message today. I needed to be reminded that it should be the Lord’s will not mine. It is also a reminder to be grateful in all things an give him praise and thanks.

  119. Kalilah White says:

    ❤️

  120. Lonita Dueck says:

    ❤️

  121. Katelyn Hamm says:

    Wow! This message was amazing and so insightful. I never really thought about how Mary first identified herself as the Lords servant when she could have said so many other things. Lord may I have the trust and attitude of Mary.

  122. Cecelia Taylor says:

    Help us to see your will for our lives

  123. Lesley Conway says:

    ❤️

  124. Lauren Geneva says:

    ☀️

  125. Sarah Johnson says:

    It is so interesting to think about how identities are displayed in the Bible. I think to this story, where Mary states her identity as the Lord’s servant, and i think to Ruth where she does the same. But I also think of characters like Naomi who stayed her identity was only as a woman who could no longer bear kids. Until Ruth faithfully helps Naomi realize her greater identity, Naomi thinks she’s only here to have kids. To me that shows we can have a life-changing impact on people by helping them find their identity simply through living quietly and faithfully in the ordinary of our day to day.

    1. Taylor Heiss says:

      So true! Love this

  126. Lacy Hall says:

    ❤️

  127. Lauren Geneva says:

    I needed to be reminded that his will is always better for me.

  128. Brandi Kranz says:

    ❤️

  129. Whitney Hornbuckle says:

    So many times in our lives we are faced with hard things and we ask like Mary, “How can this be?” The answer was and still is – with the help of the Holy Spirit and the power of God. It’s not our strength but His that we need to do hard things. To be obedient. To keep the faith. To endure.

    1. kellyn andonian says:

      yesss!

  130. Jasmine Scott says:

    ❤️

  131. Maggie Murmann says:

    ❤️

  132. Greta Vinston says:

    To be able to react like Mary everytime I’m thrown a curveball.

  133. Cassandra Nunez says:

    The hardest thing for me, many times, is not having the answers, not being ok with a curveball or speed bump I encounter or even not seeing the straight pathway to our purpose/ destination. But when I focus on being obedient to the Lord, I allow faith to do it’s work, I allow peace to surpass all of MY understandings and most importantly, I allow God to be my guide. Be more like Mary.

  134. Zoe Walkers says:

    This message is so beautiful and powerful.

  135. Gloria W says:

    I love the perspectives on this platform

  136. Teddy Muthoni says:

    Let us lean into the the Lord’s calling with obedience

  137. Danielle Buckenmeyer says:

    This is beautiful ❤️

  138. Melisa Celis says:

    Amen❤️

  139. Andrea Davis says:

    I always feel so disappointed with myself when I too get that cycle of fear, disbelief, frustration, and defeat to then finally being obedient and trusting the Lord. Frustration overcomes me many times. Let me be like Mary in knowing who I am, the Lord’s servant and putting away frustration and being like Jesus in obedience to the Father. It really is best and where I find peace.

  140. mckenzie helmuth says:

    When we fight god, we choose another identity over the one he’s given us. He is worthy to be the master of our lives ❤️

  141. Betsaida Cohen says:

    I need to work on this.

  142. Tatiana Perez says:

    This has opened my eyes and to reflect on my identity as a child of God. Even when times are trouble I need to be more like Mary and allow God to take hold of the situation instead of trying to analyze the situation. Have faith and trust that God is taking care of any troubles that arise.

  143. Lakechia Smith says:

    Our true identity; a child of God.

  144. Shelby Moore says:

    This is making me reflect on my identity with HIM. It’s our true identity. Not “married”, “dog mom”, “bachelors of science in nursing” nothing that we have earned on this earth is our identity.

  145. Hope Roth says:

    This is really making me reflect on my identity!!!

  146. Shiyang Zheng says:

    Truly needed this today. Trust in His timing and not your own

  147. Amber EzzellFrye says:

    Amen!

  148. Victoria Baxter says:

    “Faithful response” lies is knowing your “true identity” Whoaaaa, did that hit home.

  149. Brandi Smith says:

    ❤️

  150. Ashton Terry says:

    Let us live in obedience to God even in the troubled times. We must trust Him in every situation like Mary did. ❤️

  151. Kaira de Guzman says:

    Let us not doubt in the dark what the Lord God has told us in the light. Keep walking by faith, for He knows the best for us and acts according to our best interest.

  152. Alisha Lankford says:

    SO GOOD. needed this today!

  153. Amy Van Wyk says:

    I love the imagery of “leaning in” to God’s will. It is hard to trust, when there are so many questions and so few answers. Perfect peace only comes when we’re walking with Him.

  154. Wylie Donald says:

    We should all try to be more like Mary. The situation was just sprung upon her and she handled it like a pro. She just went with the flow. Not only that, but by “going with the flow” she put all her trust in God to know that she is safe. I feel like I would of been scared and said no. She showed us that we all need to put all our faith and strength in God. I recently explained to my 8 year old sister that God loves us more than both of our parents combined. She was shocked. I think that Gods love is such an amazing, dependable thing. If we mess up, he won’t quit on us. He will stick with us even if no one else does. I really suggest The God Who Stays by Matthew West. It has inspired me to trust in God so much.

  155. Allison Gudeman says:

    God is far more gracious than I could ever be to myself.

  156. Jennifer Akers says:

    Amen.

  157. Nicole Green says:

    Wow! Could it be when we’re fighting God, we are prioritizing the identity we have for ourselves rather than the identity He has given us? Such a powerful message!

    1. Josy-Anne LeBel says:

      Amen!!

  158. Emily Lindbloom says:

    Crazy how this study really has been resonating. Recently I graduated college and have been at home due to COVID. Now I am taking a step into the working world for July as an art instructor at an arts Center. I am scared about moving and taking on this position but trying to trust in the presence of God too. He is already there. Part of me can’t believe I’m going to work there. I don’t deserve this! Now I am trying to turn to obedience and not let fear or disbelief rule me.

    1. Wylie Donald says:

      Trust in God, he will help you through these times.

  159. Amanda Nicole says:

    This message feels like it is speaking directly to me today! Wow

  160. Sharon, Jersey Girl says:

    “I think the secret to Mary and Joseph’s faithful responses lies in their true identity.” This moved me to tears. I want my true identity to be solely in Jesus Christ. How often I fail, but I praise God that He is the God of “second chances”. What a patient, forgiving, merciful, loving God we serve!

    1. Farah T says:

      ❤️

    2. Kathy Johnson says:

      This was the most thought provoking line to me as well! May it increasingly become true of us as well.

  161. Avis DeniseGraves says:

    ❤️

  162. Sarah Little says:

    These never disappoint. I love this series!

  163. Kalin Brooks says:

    Wow. This was great

  164. Michele Rezewski says:

    I am loving this study! Please do more like this

  165. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I have had so many questions this year. Becoming a mom and dealing with a pandemic has really stretched my faith and trust in God. I have searched for answers to my questions on google instead of going to God. I pray I would lean on the Lord, knowing that he alone knows what the future holds. I want to trust him even when I don’t have all of the answers.

    1. Wylie Donald says:

      I’m praying for you!

    2. Debi Cowan says:

      I have googled more than I should instead of praying or trusting Him. I’m glad He is gracious and not done with us.

  166. Lynn Painter says:

    I’m having to trust God and my obedience to him with a daughter who doesn’t speak to me when we shared our concern as she began to date an older man who is a non believer. I miss her so much, and vacillate between anger and sadness. Questioning why I even spoke to her about our concerns. Her walk with the Lord, whatever it is, is her walk with the Lord… it’s not mine… how do I ever reach contentment in this situation Lord. My trust is in you always

    1. Lisa Vanderplate says:

      Pray and Trust!!! That is the season I am in for my two adult girls who live at home and are not walking with the Lord

    2. Oluseyi Adediran says:

      Pray and trust. God knows already, He might want to use him to see His light and transform him. May the peace of God be with you Lynn. Amen

  167. PamC says:

    Katie, thank you for this post today. It really opened my eyes and heart. Mari V you’re in my prayers this morning.

  168. Makenzie Benish says:

    I’ve always kind of though the phrase “your identity in Christ” was meant for when you feel like you are unworthy, unloved, lonely, and other unwanted feelings… and I still think it is applicable there. But this passage shed some light on it for me personally that it can also be used to describe God’s will for us. Being his servant IS our identity in Christ. When we pursue our own ventures of identity, we lose our servant hood identity in Christ. Lord let me come back to my true identity in Christ. Help me to serve you with my whole heart and an open mind. Help me to be obedient to your calling in faith.

  169. DOROTHY says:

    Amen, Kristen, Camden Pigg, NanaK, Kristi L, Angie, Lissa, Elisha Anne, CeeGee, amen.
    Churchmouse, that’s great, may I pass it on and also use it for myself.
    Angela Dong you may have read parts of it before because I noticed in yesterday’s much of it was the same as what was written for the devotional for Esther for the study “Women and Men in the Word: The Old Testament”.
    Lizzie, you have a way with words and know how to say something special.
    Taylor and Mary K., I like your equations and I too need to take a closer look at it and my life.
    Praying for you Mari V.

  170. Diana Fleenor says:

    I’m grateful for the reminder of our true identity; the Lord’s servant who is in Christ therefore a child of God. In the midst of discussions about race, ethnic, cultural, gender, social economic, and ability differences and injustices because of them, my mind has been a bit confused of how to think about our identity as believers. Often it does seem like the conversation is prioritizing other identities over our true identity. I’m praying to be equipped to speak these reminders as opportunities arise while showing compassion for the suffering many people groups have experienced because of their physical identity.

    KRISTI L: Thanks for sharing the story of having the honor to lead another to Christ because of an inconvenience in your life. What a good reminder for all of us to look for gospel opportunities in every situation!

  171. Deborah Newnum says:

    Amen!

  172. CeeGee says:

    Thank you, KATIE STODDARD, for pricking my heart today and showing me that I have at times desired a role reversal of my God and me. I often feel guilty for thinking things should just go my way when setbacks arise. How humbling it is to recognize that act for what it is. I pray I am a better servant of our LORD for having read this devo!

  173. CeeGee says:

    DOROTHY, moving is always a stressful situation even when everything goes perfectly. Adding more people/plans to the mix adds to the stress. I will be Praying for your hearts as you work together.

  174. CeeGee says:

    MARI V, I am lifting you up in prayer right now and believing with you in God’s strength for today and acceptance of the outcome. You are loved!

  175. Sarah Minton says:

    Identity in God as gods child is the only way to trust him.

  176. DOROTHY says:

    As my moving day draws near tensions are growing in my sister and nephew because they need to get through all my niece’s stuff and in myself because I need to know what furniture I might be able to take and what they are going to keep. In past moves not everything has been packed, I had a roommate who would get nervous about things and made herself sick and then couldn’t get it done, I worked full-time and she didn’t so she was to do most of the packing. So my son is now telling me I need to make sure I have everything packed but I only have one room of things unlike before. All the rest of my things are in storage packed up. I will be so happy when all of this is done and over with. I move on Saturday, June 20 so please be praying for me and my family that we make it through this next week. Bless all of you my SRT sisters and have a great weekend.

  177. Mari V says:

    Talk about change and delay and the unexpected. A month ago today because of COVID-19 and Shelter in place orders my court to continue the legal separation was rescheduled. Today’s the day. I feel strong and I know it’s because of your prayers. I want to believe that God gave me more time to pray and to become stronger. I have to admit I was quite upset when it was rescheduled as I want this to be behind me. I don’t know what to expect today, but I know one thing for sure Jesus is with me and so are your prayers.

    1. Maricella Smith says:

      Praying for you Mari. The peace of God be with you today. His plans not our own

  178. Elisha Anne says:

    He is looking for faith, do we believe? Whatever HE says will happen? We can have joy, peace and pleasures forevermore with Him! Sing praise to Him, He makes a way even when there seems to be no way. Praise God! ♥️

  179. Mary K says:

    Taylor, I love your equation. That is such a blessing and so clever.
    The only thing I would add to it:
    Trust + Love + Surrender (of being lord over our own lives) = obedience.

    It’s such a sign of Love from the Lord when he calls on us to be obedient for His purpose and in return we show Him our love by being obedient even when we don’t understand.

    Love this. Thank you again Taylor. :)

  180. Lissa says:

    Humble, trusting, obedient, a servant’s heart.

  181. Taylor says:

    Another reminder that trust + surrender (of being lord over our own lives) = obedience. Simple yet sometimes very complicated math. What part of your will do you need to surrender to His will today? For me, it’s my “mental timeline” of how I wanted 2020 to go. Have a blessed weekend everyone <3
    Also Kristi L thank you so much for sharing that wonderful story of how God used an "inconvenient" situation in your life for a might way!

    1. Jennifer Anapol says:

      I love this equation you created! It makes the devotional and bible reading for today easy to understand:)

  182. Jane K says:

    Mari V praying for you today that God’s presence would go with you and give you rest! Exodus 33:14.

  183. Angie says:

    I love Mary’s response to the angel.
    He tells her she is going to have a son, and gives her very important details about Jesus and His greatness.
    Mary asks…”But how?” Because in her finite mind, she was thrown at the first statement, “You are going to have a son.” She knows how babies are made, and knows that hasn’t happened in her body. So she starts with her first, very basic question, “Physically, how can this be?”
    When answered, she doesn’t question any more of the details but says, “Here I am…your servant.” God said it, so she accepted it, without dwelling on all the details, recognizing and reverencing Him as her King.
    As the time of her pregnancy passed, step by step she accepted what happened. (Joseph’s initial thinking to put her away quietly, until the angel came to him. People talking. The long trip to Bethlehem at full-term. No room in the inns. Jesus’ birth. The shepherds.) All these things Mary treasured in her heart.
    She is a beautiful example of trust in God, and I appreciate the example.

  184. Kristi L says:

    I’ve always been someone who doesn’t respond well to unexpected change, but I’m learning to trust God and His plans for me. Four years ago, like Katie, I experienced a canceled flight too. At first I was upset, but I soon realized why it happened. Because my flight was canceled, I had an extra night with a loved one of mine, someone God had laid on my heart earlier in the year. I had begun to realize that this person didn’t know Jesus, and I prayed daily for salvation. I had no idea when I left the airport that evening, tired and wishing I was home, that God would answer my prayers that night. Could I have led this person to Christ over the phone? Sure, I suppose so. But God is so good that He allowed my flight to be canceled, just so I could experience that miracle in person. I don’t know if I’ve ever been more in awe of God than I was that night. That story always reminds me to trust God when changes come. He is in control, and the story He’s writing is a beautiful one.

  185. NanaK says:

    The angel Gabriel’s message to Mary (and Joseph) didn’t just change their plans, it changed their whole lives. How often do I over analyze God’s calling to me instead of simply replying, “…not my will but Yours be done.”
    Father, forgive me when I put my will above Yours. I pray I will “lean into Your calling with (immediate) obedience.”

  186. Lizzie says:

    He is our hope, so as we come to Him, laying down our lives, in His presence, we find life! 1 John 4:9-10. So walk in obedience like Mary and Joseph and like Jesus. Philippians 2:5-7 and Luke 22:41-42. And remember He is everything!
    “Indeed, God is my salvation;
    I will trust him and not be afraid,
    for the Lord, the Lord himself,
    is my strength and my song.
    He has become my salvation.”
    3 You will joyfully draw waterk
    from the springs of salvation,
    4 and on that day you will say,
    “Give thanks to the Lord; proclaim his name!
    Make his works known among the peoples.
    Declare that his name is exalted.” Isaiah 12
    I praise you Lord, you are truly my hope and salvation, my life is yours!

  187. Angela Dong says:

    I feel like reading this devotion before? The story of the cancelled flight is strangely familiar…

    1. Kristi L says:

      You’re right! I noticed earlier this week that these devotions were featured in previous reading plans. This one is from day 18 of the Advent 2017 plan. There are some slight edits, but it’s pretty much the same.

      https://shereadstruth.com/the-angel-visits-mary-and-joseph/

  188. Tiffy says:

    Today it’s highlighted to me that despite circumstances that seem troubling, fearful, or frustrating, Mary was favoured by God for His purposes to bless her and to bless others. Although we may be troubled and frustrated while living God’s call, let us be at peace for we are in His favour.

  189. Elizabeth Siesel says:

    I think it’s fair to say the Luke passage is over-familiar to me. Do you ever encounter a well-worn chapter that you have to have extra discipline to read again? But the way Katie drew out these truths gave me something fresh for today/this season.

  190. Audrey Brooks says:

    Submit to My will and My way And My plan for the day is Hard for me to do.
    May I learn today to Walk with Christ in obedience and to remind myself who My True Love is…..

  191. Churchmouse says:

    In our home, when unexpected news descends, we give ourselves several minutes to “feel all the feels.” We don’t try to smooth things over or, in some way, invalidate the emotions that come. We also try not to stay stuck there. We move on to “what is the next right thing to do?” and we pray. Life brings the unexpected but the goodness of God transcends all. Even in _______ (fill in the blank), God is in charge and in control.

    1. Jane K says:

      That question, “what is the next right thing to do?” has helped me tremendously to move forward. Whether it’s a hard decision that needs to be made, or just something I need to do, but don’t necessarily want to do. I also like the idea of giving ourselves time to feel all the emotions and then move on. I have realized that I can’t react to every feeling I have, but God gave me the ability to feel so there is purpose to them too. Thank you Churchmouse for sharing your thoughts today.

    2. Praise Santos says:

      acknowledging the emotions and not pushing so hard to immediately make it smooth

  192. Camden Pigg says:

    “When we fight God, could it be that we’re prioritizing another identity over the one he’s given us?” So true. When unexpected news happens, it shows me how much I idolize my plans, certainty, and control. In short, being lord over my life and self-determination. I need to prioritize the identity he’s given me and submit myself to his will and his plans for me instead of my own.

  193. Kristen says:

    Amen! Many times I want to be Lord over my life. She is right. His ways are best,. Thank you for the reminder of how quickly Mary and Joseph were obedient. Lord, please humble me and change me in all areas that aren’t pleasing to You. Help me to draw others to You and not away. In Jesus’s Name Amen

  194. MARTHA HIX says:

    ❤️