I just sent an email to one of my closest confidants requesting a "reminder" that I made the right decision. Truth-be-told, though I love this friend more than words can say, I do not need her affirmation. I need His direction. Yesterday morning, I was reminded of God's providence and His ability to meet the needs of His people over and over and over again. One of our scripture lessons came from Isaiah 40. This book of the Bible has long held a special place in my heart. Through the darkest times in my life, I have sought refuge in Isaiah 45:2-3, Isaiah 43, and many others. Yesterday's passage, however, rocked me to the core...more than normal. (If you know me well, you are aware that few Sundays pass at Holy Trinity Church without some sniffles from me on the second row. I am often moved to tears by the words of our Lord through the voice of our incredible church leaders). Ok, so back to the point...me and tangents...we are BEST friends.
The title of this passage is "Comfort for God's People." I am a firm believer that, no matter what your lot in life, at some point you will need the comfort of our Shepherd. Even if financial strain never becomes a reality, or illness does not visit your home...at some point, we all sink into a pit of uncertainty, doubt, fear, anger, mistrust, and the list goes on. Isaiah 40 STARTS with "Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the LORD's hand double for all her sins." Talk about BREAKING OFF CHAINS! That is freedom in its purest and most perfect sense.
Though the entire passage practically unzipped my heart, the following verses filled the places long empty from loneliness.
"A voice of one calling: 'In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a high for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the LORD will be revealed and all mankind together will see it. For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.' A voice says, 'Cry out.' And I said, 'What shall I cry?' .....You who bring good tidings to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, 'Here is your God!' See, the Sovereign LORD comes with POWER, and His arm rules for Him. See, His reward is with Him, and His recompense accompanies Him. He tends His flock like a shepherd; He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart; He gently leads those that have young."
Ok, as I sit and copy, word for word, this passage, I have to stop and beg you to read the rest. Truly, the entire context is phenomenal. Even now I am captivated by His indescribable power, and yet stilled by His intimate knowledge of me and compassion towards me.
So...what the heck am I doing? Why am I "journeying" now...in the middle of such uncertainty? Well, watch out for my caution lights and make room for the "Wide Load Ahead." I am cleaning out the clutter, sweeping away the cobwebs, and preparing my heart and life for a total overhaul (see verse above describing leveled mountains and raised valleys). Consider me "under construction," if you will. So, with that said, pardon my mess. I am just making a highway for God..........straight to my heart.