4 Minute Devotions: Holding on to Hope

My daughter Lauren flies out to Africa this weekend on a three month mission to help orphaned children in Tabora, Tanzania. It will be a time for all of my family to keep our hope in the Lord.


Podcast version here


Tomorrow, our youngest daughter Lauren flies out to Africa for three months. She is excited about the whole adventure ahead of her, whereas I don’t think I’ll get a whole night’s sleep until she’s back home.


Lauren has been planning this for a whole year. She wants to do something that will make a difference in the lives of the least. She will be working with the orphaned children of Tabora, Tanzania. Their parents have all died of AIDS, so Lauren will be tutoring, supporting, and leading a summer program to help these young people.


I am proud of what Lauren seeks to do because I know that within myself, I could not do it. I think if I ever got there, I would want to stay forever and help them the rest of my life. Perhaps Africa is Lauren’s calling of the heart, just as America has been mine.


Psalm 31:24    Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD.


This summer, my family may be spread all over the world. Evelyn’s mum is ill and it may turn out to be a terminal condition. If that happens, she will fly out to Glasgow to be with her for a while. This could mean that I’ll have a daughter in Virginia, one in Africa, and a wife back in Scotland all at the same time. It will be a strange feeling and the first time that all four of us have been separated from one another.


But, as our kids sing at church, God’s got the whole world in His hands, so I reckon He will be holding on to my family wherever they are and whatever they are doing. It will be a time to remain strong in faith and take heart that God is doing what He knows best. We all have our hope in the Lord, so no matter what happens, He is with us.


Prayer:                        Lord God, our lives never stand still and we undergo many changes, transitions, and transformations. Throughout those times, Your constant love and watchfulness over us comforts, strengthens, and encourages us. Thank You for never letting go of us, even during those trying times when our grasp of You is weak. In Christ’s Holy Name, we pray. Amen.


PS Lauren has her own blog page about the journey. You can find it at


About Stushie

I'm originally from Scotland and have been a Presbyterian pastor for over thirty years. I live in Knoxville, TN. I enjoy art as a means of therapy, but also as a creative way to strengthen my spiritual connection to God.
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