Daily Advent Devotions from Church Street UMC

Monday, December 20

By Ann Reego

When Things Don’t Turn Out as Planned

Read Matthew 2:13-15a

“Now after they had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Get up, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.’ Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother by night, and went to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod.”

I am looking forward to Christmas so much this year! Jim and I haven’t seen our Tampa daughter, son-in-love and two grandchildren since Christmas of 2019. It’s a long story, but the root of all the evil is Covid. And to make it even better, my Knoxville daughter, son-in-love and the four girls will be in Tampa with us. It’s the first time all of us have been in the same house since June of 2018. I can’t wait. It will be truly the best most blessed time in two long years.  

Not being with my Tampa family has been hard and frustrating for all of us. Watching Emily and Evan grow up on Zoom has broken my heart. I confess, I have whined A LOT! So, picture Joseph when he had this dream with an angel telling him to take Mary and the baby and flee to Egypt. He had dealings with angels about this baby before, so I guess it wasn’t too hard to believe. I wonder how Mary felt, when Joseph told her about his dream and his plan? I’m sure she had plans to take Jesus back to Nazareth and show him off to her family. But again, she had listened to an angel once before, so off they went to avoid Herod’s wrath and the killing of all male children under two.  

Are you waiting for me to tie this all together? Well, here goes. Mary and Jospeh listened to the angels and saved their lives and the life of their child. And by doing so, they blessed us beyond words.  

Jim and I listened to the words of the CDC and Dr. Fauci and have been without seeing part of our family for two years. We are still alive and healthy, and grateful for science, and also for a church who protects and cares for us in all ways.  

Mary and Joseph must have looked forward to going home, but they spent 3 years in Egypt waiting for Herod to die. It’s only been 2 years for us, so I guess we are lucky!


Glorious and Loving God, thank you for protecting us and telling us how to remain safe from harm. Thank you for the leaders of Church Street UMC who prioritize our health and safety.  Thank you for the birth of your Son, and in His name we pray. Amen.

Have a Prayer Request?

Submit your prayer request confidentially by clicking here.