Thriving Devotional - March 21, 2020


There is a town just east of Spokane, Washington, with an interesting name. In 1905, residents submitted suggestions for the new municipality, and the one that was chosen was “Opportunity.” How could a Broadway play not have been written about this place?

Opportunity is deeply ingrained in the American Dream. It’s the chance to move up, improve your standard of living, increase your success. It’s about seeing potential and having the guts (and the luck) to take a risk and see it pay off. Opportunity is also about wisdom, and not missing a chance to grow more fully into who we are created to be – even if it comes through pain.

“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity,” wrote Albert Einstein. Sometimes the difficulty can become all-consuming. Sometimes all we can think of is getting the difficulty over with so we can get it behind us and move on. But to what? The voice of wisdom cautions us to slow down and invite God to use any and every situation to shape us:

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. (Ephesians 5:15-17)

Understand what the Lord’s will is.

So what are some of the opportunities that are presented to us? A few thoughts:

· Take time to have dinner together.

· Take a walk and leave your phone at home.

· Discover the refreshment of actual Sabbath.

· Spend time reading the Bible and seeking God.

· Evaluate what’s really important in your life.

I’m sure you can add to the list.

John Ortberg tells of a time someone asked Winston Churchill, "What most prepared you to lead Great Britain through World War II?"

Churchill responded, "It was the time I repeated a class in grade school."

"You mean you flunked a grade?"

"I never flunked in my life. I was given a second opportunity to get it right."

Whatever the Coronavirus phenomenon ends up being - or whatever it is that you face - it needn’t be wasted. We can live in opportunity.

We all have an opportunity to get it right.

Bob Jacobs

Pastor at Westminster Church

Bob Jacobs has served for 13 years as the Senior Pastor of Westminster Church, Rapid City. He shares a deep commitment to see our community thrive in love for one another, especially in trying times like these. If you're interested in more of Bob's writings, check out his personal blog at

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