Written By: Kristen Oliver
Today we are reading from Isaiah 45. I have to admit that when I do my devotions I usually get so much from the New Testament that I tell myself, “I don’t need to read that chapter in the Old Testament today…” and it never fails when I don’t listen to that voice, I learn something new about God’s character I didn’t know. So from Isaiah 45 verses 1-8, we learn that God anoints Cyrus to carry out his plans for Israel. Cyrus was one of the few kings of Israel or Judah that did what God asked of him without asking for anything in return. Then in verse 7 God says,
This whole chapter is almost humorous to me. I can hear Gods sarcasm, when he once again repeats his qualifications for us. How many times do we question God? Question his plan for our lives or lack of one? Then we read in Isaiah and he reiterates for us (if you will allow me to paraphrase) I am the Lord, and there is no other. I will strengthen you. I will go before you. I will level the mountains. I will give you hidden treasures…all this says the Lord. (Verses 1-8) Then he says something that surprised me…
“I bring prosperity and create disaster.” (vs. 7)
Wait a minute? He creates disaster? Why would He do that? I thought he wanted the best for me? He just said all these great things, reassured us of his power and then he says…but wait there’s more….I will not only do great things for you, but I will also show you my power by humbling you with tough situations. You see God is not handing us a cookie cutter life. If we follow these 3 simple steps we can have a Christ filled easy life that everyone will be jealous of. Actually he says the opposite. God says, I want you to have all these things but in order to get them you have to go through some hard stuff. You have to work everyday on your relationship with me or you will lose it. You have to live a life daily reflecting me in everything you do.
Ok so why would we want to do this? Because God is ruler over light and darkness, over prosperity and disaster.
Our lives are sprinkled with both types of experiences, and both are needed for us to grow spiritually.
When good times come, thank God and use your prosperity for him. When bad times come, don’t resent them, but ask what you can learn from this refining experience to make you a better servant of God.
There are some days when I don’t feel like doing my devotions, but every time I do, I learn something new, I’m encouraged and inspired. I hope you are too.
God I pray that you will remind me of your truths when I’m tempted to skip out on spending time with you. Don’t let me settle for OK. I pray I will remember that I am not there yet nor have I arrived. You have more to teach me in order to grow me into s better representation of you. I know it takes daily surrender and today I surrender.
In Jesus name I pray,
Question for thought: