Tag Archive | Isaiah 61

God does not waste anything..

 

 

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I cannot remember who first told me that.. but I imagine it was over 30 years ago. I did not understand it the way I do now:) God is at work in every circumstance and will use every single experience for good. Yes, I had trouble with that one ( Romans 8:28) at first, but now.. it is very real to me. Every difficult and challenging trial I’ve experienced has been training for times when I can sit with another person and encourage them.. the reason? The more hard things you go through in life.. the more you have to offer others who are hurting. When people come to me for counseling I often say ” you really cannot shock me because of all the life experiences I have lived through” usually that turns out to be true. God does not waste anything.. He uses it all to help us understand and help others.

It feels really good to realize once again that He is always training me to be more understanding and compassionate. He is preparing me to see into the next broken heart that sits in front of me and needs healing. How does He accomplish that? I am not sure.. I do know that He stretches me and finds those places that need changing and as I agree with Him.. He begins a deeper work of transformation.. It is awesome.

I don’t know about you.. but I want the full measure of life that God has for me ( John 10:10) and I realize that often comes through trials and tests. Somehow we don’t learn as easily when things are going smoothly..in reality that is rare in the life of a Believer. No.. it is not all trials and suffering, but we are never promised an easy life here. What we do have is His promise to be with us.. His Spirit to guide us and strength for the journey.

So if things are difficult right now.. remember He is doing something deep inside your heart.. preparing you for the day when you will share what you have learned with another person.. when you will encourage someone who has a broken heart or is struggling with pain and suffering . You will become a source of life to them.. bringing hope and healing.

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners,
 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
    and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
   and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor.

This is one of my very favorite scriptures ( from Isaiah 61) Jesus read this in the temple in the book of Luke.. It describes perfectly what He came to do and what He allows us to do with Him.. Amazing!

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The year of the Lord’s favor..Isaiah 61

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
    because the Lord has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
    to proclaim freedom for the captives
    and release from darkness for the prisoners,
 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
    and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
   and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendor. “

Since the beginning of this year.. just a week ago, I have been hearing God say that this is the year of His favor. Immediately I remembered that this phrase is found in Isaiah 61. The same passage that God spoke to me 13 years ago ..here we are in 2013 and I am hearing it again. It is the passage that Jesus quoted in Luke 4.

After the temptation in the wilderness,  Jesus returned to Galilee and by the power of the Spirit He stood up and read from the scroll of Isaiah in the temple. He told everyone that today that scripture was fulfilled. He came to rescue and heal and restore the brokenhearted.  He was revealing His identity to the Jewish community, many of them would fail to believe that He was the Messiah..the one that they were waiting for.

How many of us are failing to recognize who Jesus really is? I’m not talking about people outside the church, but rather those of us who proclaim to be believers..who claim to follow Him. God is speaking to us right now..telling us that He is here among us ready to do great things. He is our both our savior and redeemer. He has come to set us free to live abundantly..to live fully..to restore us..to heal us..and to bless us beyond anything we could ask or imagine. Surely this is truly the year of the Lord’s favor.

He has great things in store for His faithful followers..rewards, blessings, gifts that will come in surprising ways. Keep your eyes open for the work of God in and around you..you will be amazed.

I will bless my people and their homes around my holy hill. And in the proper season I will send the showers they need. There will be showers of blessing.”

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An Earthquake

For about the last year I have been asking the Lord to heal me…from my past. He heard and He has acted. It did not happen in the way I would have expected.. basically He stopped me in my tracks and isolated me so He could do something deep in my heart. It has been scary and painful. He dug into the deepest roots of my childhood and brought the repressed feelings to the surface. I never knew they were there. It felt like an earthquake inside my body.

God is always waiting for the opportunity to do a healing work in us. Many of us are way too busy to even ask..many of us don’t really want to be healed. He is not an intruder..He never barges in where He is not wanted. He waits and when we are ready to receive.. He moves. He goes to the deepest wound and sticks a knife in it..the dam bursts and before you know it, you are flooded with memories..crying your eyes out. It is a sovereign work of the Holy Spirit. Not for the faint hearted.

I share this with you so you will understand the heart of our God. He wants to change us..to make us over in His image. To release us..removing the garbage that we carry around with us day-to-day. He is after us with a vengeance.. He is not timid.. He is wild. He is unpredictable and He is not safe.. but He is good. He requires a heart that is fully dedicated to Him.. He won’t settle for anything less.

Jesus quoted the beginning of this scripture in the book of Luke..

” The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
   because the LORD has anointed me
   to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
   to proclaim freedom for the captives
   and release from darkness for the prisoners,

 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor
   and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn, 
 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
   instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
   instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
   instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
   a planting of the LORD
   for the display of his splendor. “