Monday, April 11, 2016

His Word Will Not Return Void

Our pastor preached from Isaiah 55 yesterday. It is a perfect chapter to read and remember as I head out to the sidewalk of Abortion Central today. (We think they are running a 'buy one, get one free' special since it has been so mobbed lately on Mondays.) Most Mondays, we have at least one woman choose life instead of abortion, but not always. I pray God brings us women who need, in fact, are praying to hear His word, and that many will respond. It is possible none will, and that is when I need to remind myself of Isaiah 55.

Every day every team of Cities4Life counselors speak God's word. A woman who chose life recently told me that she couldn't remember exactly what we said when she changed her mind and didn't abort. She did remember thinking, "What they are saying is TRUE."

Isaiah 55 reminds us that just as surely as the rain will not return to the earth without watering it and yielding a harvest of blossoming plants, God's word never returns void. His word will accomplish its purpose. Why do we so often fret, and worry, and wonder if we are being useful when we see no immediate fruit?

Many of us have prayed in God's word for years, to no apparent effect.  Loved ones still rebel from God, people still treat us unjustly, diseases still batter our bodies, money still disappears while bills multiply. If God's word is so powerful, why do we not see it wiping up every mess we have prayed so desperately over, citing scripture to support our sincere and Godly desires?

God promises us, His word will accomplish His purpose. If we have spoken His word in truth, we need only be still before Him, knowing He is God and His perfect plan will ultimately prevail. The promises of Scripture will be fulfilled.

BUT, the timing is God's...not ours.

Isaiah 55 reminds us that "our ways are not His ways." His perfect plan may not be our perfect plan. In fact, almost assuredly it is not. He is God. We are dust. It's good to keep that in mind.

Be still and know that He is God, and trust that He knows what He's doing.

Isaiah 55
 “Come, all you who are thirsty,
    come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
    come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
    without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread,
    and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
    and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
    listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
    my faithful love promised to David.
See, I have made him a witness to the peoples,
    a ruler and commander of the peoples.
Surely you will summon nations you know not,
    and nations you do not know will come running to you,
because of the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel,
    for he has endowed you with splendor.”
Seek the Lord while he may be found;
    call on him while he is near.
Let the wicked forsake their ways
    and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them,
    and to our God, for he will freely pardon.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10 As the rain and the snow
    come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
    without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
    so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
    It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
    and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
12 You will go out in joy
    and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
    will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
    will clap their hands.
13 Instead of the thornbush will grow the juniper,
    and instead of briers the myrtle will grow.
This will be for the Lord’s renown,
    for an everlasting sign,
    that will endure forever.”

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