Peace be with you guys on this Christmas week! Today’s devotional comes to us from one of the church’s fantastic worship leaders, Kelsi Walker. Take some time to dig into the scripture, reflection, questions, and prayer. May your week be full of God’s presence and have a Merry Christmas!
“Even the wilderness and desert will be glad in those days. The wasteland will rejoice and blossom with spring crocuses. Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers and singing and joy! The deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon, as lovely as Mount Carmel or the plain of Sharon. There the LORD will display his glory, the splendor of our God. With this news, strengthen those who have tired hands, and encourage those who have weak knees. Say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, and do not fear, for your God is coming to destroy your enemies. He is coming to save you.” And when he comes, he will open the eyes of the blind and unplug the ears of the deaf. The lame will leap like a deer, and those who cannot speak will sing for joy! Springs will gush forth in the wilderness, and streams will water the wasteland. “The parched ground will become a pool, and springs of water will satisfy the thirsty land. Marsh grass and reeds and rushes will flourish where desert jackals once lived.”
Isaiah 35:1-7 NLT
This year has been tough. I feel like humanity hasn’t caught a break and I feel weighed down and tired. Maybe you feel that same. As I have been reading through my advent devotionals the last several weeks I feel like what I have seen in the world has been highlighted. We desperately need a rescue. It seems as though the constant cry of the world has gotten louder and louder over the last months of the year and we can’t ignore it. We desperately need a rescue.
I read this passage and I feel lighter. I feel the peace of a promise that God has not forgotten us and that He is on His way, that He will save us! Be strong and do not fear, for God is coming. Eyes will be opened, ears will hear, the deserts will become green. Everything will change and nothing will stay the same… all things will be redeemed.
We as the Church believe this. It is our strongest and most daring hope, that the world can be and will be restored. And it has already begun! Christ has come, no longer must we live separated from God. We have a savior. There is a rescue! We can now live in communion with our Father and see how He works mightily in our lives and the world around us! Restoration is real and it is happening. Like He makes the deserts flourish and become green with life, God is bringing our world and the people in it back to life.
In what ways has this year been challenging? Take some time to lay these trials at the feet of Jesus.
In what ways have you seen restoration in your life, in the world?
The passage says that God is coming to make things right and when this happens that “the voiceless break into song.” What does this mean to you as a member of the worship team? What songs are you singing? Take some time to think about the significance of being able to sing to our God because He came to rescue us.
Lord, You know our hearts. You know how they ache. You know how they race with excitement and hope for something more, something only You can give. Lord help us to not be fearful, but to believe that You will come and make things new, that You will come to rescue us. God, we pray that we find peace in your promise, that our hope guides the way we see the world. We pray that we trust you as we watch the world turn, from the desert wasteland, into green pasture, abundant with life! Thank you for Your love and rescue through Your Son.