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Isaiah 54:1-10

Key Verse:

10 For the mountains may depart
    and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
    and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,”
    says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

Reflection:

Peace, love and rest. Things we all want, but few rarely find them. I remember reading The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan and coming to the section where the protagonist, Christian, comes to the Slough of Despond. This is a place where guilt, fears, and burdens gather to create one giant swamp. Oh, how often we have come to the same slough. We sink under the guilt and shame of our sins or circumstances and we begin to drown. The harder we fight with our own strength, the more we grow weary and hopeless.

It’s in these moments that God has promised us salvation, rest, and peace. Even better, God not only offers it to us, but he guarantees it. He has told us that his steadfast love “shall not depart from us” and his “covenant of peace shall not be removed.” Just prior this, God tells us that he hid his face from us for a season, but that season does not last. These promises that God has made to us, find their “YES” in Christ.

Jesus came into the world as a surety for us. He entered into the world, humbling himself by taking on human flesh. He has taken our sins, guilt and shame and placed it on himself. This verse reminds me of my favorite hymn. I recite this hymn every morning before I get out of bed and often throughout the day. It’s like a flood of light in a pitch black dark room, or better yet, a life raft thrown to me in the Slough of Despond. “O’ love that will not let me go, I rest my weary soul in thee…” Ah, sweet rest.

Derrick Brite

Prayer:

Father, thank you for rescuing us. Remind us now that you have not abandoned us. Pull us out of despair and return to us the joy of our salvation.

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1 “Sing, O barren one, who did not bear;
    break forth into singing and cry aloud,
    you who have not been in labor!
For the children of the desolate one will be more
    than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord.
“Enlarge the place of your tent,
    and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;
do not hold back; lengthen your cords
    and strengthen your stakes.
For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left,
    and your offspring will possess the nations
    and will people the desolate cities.

“Fear not, for you will not be ashamed;
    be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced;
for you will forget the shame of your youth,
    and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.
For your Maker is your husband,
    the Lord of hosts is his name;
and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
    the God of the whole earth he is called.
For the Lord has called you
    like a wife deserted and grieved in spirit,
like a wife of youth when she is cast off,
    says your God.
For a brief moment I deserted you,
    but with great compassion I will gather you.
In overflowing anger for a moment
    I hid my face from you,
but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,”
    says the Lord, your Redeemer.

“This is like the days of Noah to me:
    as I swore that the waters of Noah
    should no more go over the earth,
so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you,
    and will not rebuke you.
10 For the mountains may depart
    and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
    and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,”
    says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

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