Reference Point Devotional

Keep Shining and Hoping! – 02/2022

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength, they will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:29-3 NIV)

Seventeen years ago, on the eve of my best friend’s surgery to remove a tumor in her shoulder, God gave me a vision of an eagle soaring and the accompanying verses in Isaiah 40:29-31.

When I first went to visit her in the hospital after her initial surgery, there was a picture of a soaring eagle in her hospital room. This picture seemed to confirm the vision God gave me the previous evening. I took that as a promise from God that Megan would be completely healed. Things do not always happen the way that we would like.

Just over a year later, Megan was perfectly healed when her life on this earth came to an end and she was united with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

One week earlier I graduated with my MLIS, but Megan’s was the perfect graduation – being promoted into our Lord’s presence! I see this now, but at the time there were questions of why? Selfishly, I wanted to have her physically around!

The Christmas before this, she painted me a picture of the Blackhead lighthouse in county Cork, Ireland. Inscribed on the back were the following words, “Dear Debs, Keep Shining for Jesus! Love Megs.” This goes along well with the words of Jesus in the sermon on the Mount.

Matthew 5:16 says: “in the same way, let your light shine before others so that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

Thank you Lord for the eternal hope that we have with you our risen Savior! Because of the promise of the resurrection, we can have the assurance of eternal life! Because our Savior lives we can face all of our todays and tomorrows with confidence!

In John 11:25-27 (NIV), Jesus said: “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me will live, even though they die; and those who live and believe in me will never die. Do you believe in this?”

Let us take this prayer in Romans as a personal promise so that we can experience it as truth: “May our God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him and may you overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit,” Romans 15:13 (NIV).

Ultimately we need to be reflectors of our Lord. We need Him to shine through us. Let’s keep shining.

Deborah McConkey

Deborah is the Library Director at EPIC Bible College and Graduate School. She has been an ACL member for 11 years.