March 20


Every Thursday at 2 p.m. I call Pat, an 82-year-old divorced mom of a friend. Pat just moved to another state, and Covid-19 has cramped her social life. Our Thursday calls offer us both a lift and a few laughs. Pat feels she failed as a mom. Her oldest son longed for a June Cleaver-type of mother, content and happy running their home. What he got, instead, was Elaine May: funny, adventurous, and enterprising. Recently, my friend told me how bright and funny he thought his mom was. Any smarts or cleverness he’d inherited came from her. When I passed that onto Pat, she almost dropped the phone. “Tell me that again!” she cried, laughing with a joy so deep you could feel decades of alienation and regret dissolving. Pat felt welcomed home.

That same miracle of acceptance—of being welcomed into God’s family—is clear in verse 10 of today’s passage. We can shout for joy because God has made us and saved us, and he is at work, preparing our real home.

Lord, we all feel like outsiders. Thank you for assuring us that our real identity and home is in you. AMEN.

About the Author

Mary Rhodes | I am a retired journalist with a passion for swimming and reading theology. I am constantly challenged at Winnetka Covenant Church to grow and spiritually mature. In its fellowship, teaching, and singing, I find Jesus. I am married to a retired Navy dentist, and my son is just beginning his Navy tour as a dentist, so I’m outnumbered. My big dream is to take part in the 2021 Senior Olympics in the 500-yard freestyle (last place is okay!) I also love writing up oral histories for elderly friends. It’s a privilege to tell their stories and trace the hand of God in their lives.

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