Bishop Election Devotional for April 24, 2019


The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. 

Read Luke 1:26-38


By Taylor Wiese, Program Director at Outlaw Ranch

As the days get longer and the threat of snow becomes more shock than tired expectation, we in the camp world are preparing to welcome a new summer staff—a unique community that forms and disbands with the changing seasons. We do our best to answer their questions as they make preparations to put their other lives on hold. We send them detailed packing lists for guidance. We remember when we were the ones packing without looking at the list.

For 60 years now, a new group of summer staff have come barreling down the same dirt road, and while their boxed-up life might be shoved into a more recent model of mini-van, their longing is no different from that of anyone who found their way to camp. What they want is what staff have always wanted.

What they want is to be changed.

In today’s text, Mary hears from the angel Gabriel that “the Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you”. It is the hard work of faith to trust that God is at work in silence, but sometimes, our lives are blessed with clear annunciations—moments of divine mystery where we are overcome by God. After a well-lived day, God met you underneath the pine trees and cold stars, and you knew something that you didn’t before. You were changed, and you had no choice in it.

As our synod prepares for a new bishop, much of that work will be done with the stuff of ordinary life. This doesn’t mean, however, that miracles are outdated or that God has stopped speaking new and unbelievable possibility into the church. Let us be like camp staff turning onto the dirt road for the first time. Our eyes are wide for burning bushes, pillars of fire, and visiting angels.


Creator God,
We have come to today, and You are still with us. Grant us wisdom and discernment as we cultivate expectant spirits and untamed holy imaginations. Amen.


Santo, Santo, Santo ELW 473



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