Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Isaiah is a harbinger of hope! Israel has returned from exile. The people are trying to find their new normal living in the land. God will establish a new covenant with Israel. God will again establish Israel as a vehicle to connect God to all the nations. This is a continuing fulfillment of the promise made to Abraham and Sarah.
They will do this only as they experience themselves as abundantly blessed … with a heritage … with a future … with a God who will not give up on them. The challenge is for them to realize that the abundance they seek is not in the land to which they have been restored. The abundance they seek is a complete and abiding trust in this God of second chances.
We live in a world that is disconnected. We have a shared emptiness and disconnection that is pervasive in every corner of the globe. What is interesting is that in a world where we have more social connection via electronic media of all kinds, we have become more disconnected than ever. This disconnection has led to increased instances of hateful rhetoric … even by religious and political leaders … that has, in many ways, paved the way for increased violence against marginalized people. The call of Christ is a call to repent of the ways we contribute to this brokenness and alienation of others. It is a reminder that “God’s ways are not our ways.” It is a call to be a light to the nations.
God not only calls us to experience the abundant life as children living in a trusting relationship with a nurturing parent, God sends us out with a message that this God of abundant living is their God, as well. And what we are promised here is that God’s word will not return to God empty!
God of Abundant Grace, come to us in our emptiness and send us out that your word will not return to you empty. Amen.