The prophet Isaiah holds out words of life-giving hope to weary souls. These words from his 58th chapter describe the fruit of the spiritual tear down and rebuild of our lives. Each of us find ourselves in various states of spiritual construction, deconstruction and reconstruction. We might wonder “just when will I get to that abundant life which Jesus promised”? Allow yourself to steep in these words today and trust that God’s Spirit in you is guiding you.
Isaiah 58:9b-14 (TMG)
“If you get rid of unfair practices,
quit blaming victims,
quit gossiping about other people’s sins,
If you are generous with the hungry
and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out,
Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness,
your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight.
I will always show you where to go.
I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places—
firm muscles, strong bones.
You’ll be like a well-watered garden,
a gurgling spring that never runs dry.
You’ll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew,
rebuild the foundations from out of your past.
You’ll be known as those who can fix anything,
restore old ruins, rebuild and renovate,
make the community livable again.
13-14 “If you watch your step on the Sabbath
and don’t use my holy day for personal advantage,
If you treat the Sabbath as a day of joy,
GOD’s holy day as a celebration,
If you honor it by refusing ‘business as usual,’
making money, running here and there—
Then you’ll be free to enjoy GOD!
Oh, I’ll make you ride high and soar above it all.
I’ll make you feast on the inheritance of your ancestor Jacob.”
Yes! GOD says so!
For Reflection and Prayer:
Listening with the “ear of your heart”, was there a word, phrase or image which caught your attention you as you listened to or slowly read the text? Gently repeat the word or phrase, giving it room to settle deeply in your heart.
Reflect on what you heard. Relish the words. You might choose to journal about what you heard.
Respond to what you heard and reflected on in your prayer with God. Is there a prayer of praise, thanksgiving or petition which rises within you?
Rest in God as you simply be and entrust yourself to God in the quiet.