Fourth Week of Lent | Sarah Cates

Psalm 101, 109
Jeremiah 18:1-11
Romans 8:1-11
John 6:27-40

As we prepare to celebrate Easter and focus on the Lenten season I reflect on a recent chapter in my life where I have experienced going without AND receiving a great gift. For the past five years, my husband and I have desired to have children and faced the pains of infertility. This past October, we brought a baby girl home—Livia Hope (meaning a “life of hope”). A few weeks after bringing her home the adoption was finalized, and I cried for the first time for joy of receiving a gift that fulfilled the desires of my heart.

In anticipation of Easter morning, I’m reminded of what someone else had to give up in order that I might have this gift. I think of Livia’s birth mom most days and have a deep love for her that is hard to articulate. My husband, Chad, and I had the opportunity to meet the birth parents and spend time getting to know them. Livia’s birth parents chose the name Livia Hope; they wanted to give her a “life of hope.” This was a beautiful picture to us. Livia’s birth parents are two of the most courageous young people we have met who made a selfless decision. Remind you of someone?

Livia has a great story—and I get to be a part of it. God has a great story, and He’s inviting us to be a part of it each day. And when we are in the midst of one of God’s great stories, I’m reminded of how much we need to rely on the Spirit of God in us for peace and life. This requires sacrifice that can look like waiting, trusting, giving and serving.

Many times in life we will be asked to wait, and other times we will be asked to give something to someone else that will be their greatest gift. How will you wait? And how will you give? WAIT with anticipation and hope, walking each day in the peace of His spirit. GIVE free and obediently. And RECEIVE with joyful thanksgiving. And if you have not yet received God’s greatest gift of salvation, He is inviting you to be His child and a part of His great story.

Senior Director, Mike Curb College of Entertainment & Music Business



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