No More Tears

“He will swallow up death forever, And the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces; The rebuke of His people He will take away from all the earth; For the LORD has spoken. Isaiah‬ ‭25:8‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

IMG_1515We often look at this scripture as reference to the afterlife; I believe it is also relevant to this life.

The people of Israel have always had to fight for their promised land. Even though God gave them the land, their enemies didn’t give up  without resistance. They still face rebuke and prejudice from other nations.

Satan, our enemy, doesn’t give up without a fight either. I often hear people talk about “all Hell breaking loose” after giving their lives to Christ. It only makes sense. Satan hates God, and we are His children. As long as we are submitting to Satan he has no reason to come against us.

While this passage was written long before the birth of Christ, it pointed to a time when God’s people will finally have peace.

Jesus first came as a lamb, but will return as the lion of Judah. The Word tells us, He will rule and reign on Earth for a thousand years, followed by the creation of a new Heaven and Earth. (Revelation 20) Those who gave their lives for the gospel will be resurrected to reign with Christ.

I’m going through a really tough time emotionally right now. This verse gives me hope. Whether I live to see the Lord’s return or not, I know that ultimately He will wipe away my tears. In fact, I can go to Him in prayer, crawl up in His lap, and allow Him to comfort me as a loving Father.

I also know when I breathe my last breath on Earth I will breathe my first in eternity. Jesus has conquered death. It is no longer an end, simply a transition.

As for rebuke, it hurts when someone we love scoffs at our faith. It’s not fun to be ridiculed or persecuted, but Paul told us to count it all joy. (James 1:2) God will reward our faithfulness; more importantly we have an opportunity to be a living witness, if we respond appropriately.

PRAYER:
Lord, you are a good Father. I am thankful I can run to You when life is hard. Though You have not promised an easy life, You have promised to be with me through it all. I can trust You will never abandon me.

Thank You for being my comforter, giver of life and for turning rebuke into joy, tears into laughter.

AMEN

It’s All About Timing

IMG_1235Have you ever read this verse and thought, “Life certainly doesn’t feel good to me right now, or I’m not prospering.” Most likely we all have. This verse is a perfect example of why scripture must be kept in the context it was written. If you read Jeremiah chapters 28 and 29 a very different perspective of this verse takes place.

God had sent the children of Israel into capitivy in Babylon. Sometimes God allows bad things to happen in our lives to get us back on track.

Hananiah, a prophet, was misleading the people of Israel, telling them that the Lord would break the chains of bondage off of them within two years. He was giving them false hope.

Jeremiah, on the other hand was a true prophet of the Lord. He told the people to build homes there, start families, seek peace in the land and flourish there, because they would remain there for seventy years. THEN the Lord would deliver them and bring them back to the promised land. God allowed them to stay there BECAUSE His plans were for their good, not for disaster.

God has a good plan for your future … even when the present seems anything but good. Let your hope rest in His faithfulness and PERFECT timing, not in your circumstances. It’s all about the timing … God’s timing.

 

Perfect Peace

image“You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind [both its inclination and its character] is stayed on You, because he commits himself to You, leans on You, and hopes confidently in You.”  Isaiah 26:3 AMP

What is the secret to perfect and constant peace? According to Isaiah it is in keeping our mind focused  on God. When we commit to Him, lean on Him and put our hope in Him we can remain at peace regardless of our circumstances.

Being a Christian doesn’t shield us from hardship or heartache, but it does guard us from being hopeless.

A few days ago I visited my brother in law in the hospital. He has terminal cancer. As we spoke he shared a conversation he had with his doctor. He basically told the doctor, “You offer no hope, but my hope is in God. He will heal me now, or He will heal me after death, either way I will be healed.”

THAT my friend is perfect peace!

Prayer: Lord, when the storms of life surround me, my hope is in You. Because of Your steadfast love I can find constant peace in knowing You are my God, and “If God be for us, who can be against us?”  (Romans 8:31)