This morning, as I prepare for another day and the plans that have been made, I sit at my kitchen table longing for a touch from the Lord. When I say a “touch” I mean the times when He allows me to sense His nearness a bit more keenly…times when I know He is speaking to my heart. God has been teaching me to follow after Him daily, regardless of my feelings and based on what the Bible tells me about my life, but I so love the times when the personal nearness of my God overwhelms me.
As I read my morning devotion from “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young (awesome), the Lord led my heart to look up one of the scripture references and I landed in Isaiah chapter 55. The entire chapter touched my heart but then I read these verses (8-13 the message):
“I don’t think the way you think
The way you work isn’t the way I work.”
“For as the sky soars high above the earth,
so the way I work surpasses the way you work,
and the way I think is beyond the way you think.
Just as rain and snow descend from the skies
and don’t go back until they’ve watered the earth,
Doing their work of making things grow and blossom,
producing seed for farmers and food for the hungry,
So will the words that come out of my mouth
not come back empty-handed.
They’ll do the work I sent them to do,
they’ll complete the assignment I gave them.
“So you’ll go out with joy,
you’ll be led into a whole and complete life.
The mountains and hills will lead the parade,
bursting with song.
All the trees of the forest will join the procession,
exuberant with applause.
No more thistles, but giant sequoias,
no more thorn bushes, but stately pines —
Monuments to me, to God,
living and lasting evidence of God.”
As my heart absorbed these words I could only cry out “You’re like rain….You’re like rain.” See, my Heavenly Father knew exactly how to speak to me this morning…He knew the places in my soul that needed some “water” from Him. When we walk with God everyday, learning to yield and trust Him, He speaks into our lives. And as you read above when God sends His word out into our lives it will not return empty-handed. God’s words complete their assignments in our lives! We may not always understand ahead of time, we may not understand the path He leads us on along the way and we certainly don’t always understand His timing. But we aren’t meant to grasp the “big picture” of His purposes and timing until He sees fit. In the meantime we take His hand and learn to trust.
I was also quite touched by this…”you’ll be led into a whole and complete life…no more thistles…monuments to me…” You know what that means to me this morning? As God speaks His word into my life and I hold onto Him, as I learn to trust Him, I can begin to rest that He has it covered. And as I live more deeply in surrender God’s words lead me into wholeness…His perfect will…healing that comes no other way. As God transforms my life, I say goodbye to the thistles and thorn bushes. In their stead grow sequoias and stately pines! My life becomes a monument to the Creator…the work He does in me and through me serves as “lasting evidence” of His existence. See, I might get bogged down if I try to debate every jot and tittle of what I believe. I may become discouraged because I can’t answer every question and meet every challenge to the evidence of what I believe based on head knowledge alone. But once my very life becomes the evidence for the power and goodness of God, I don’t have to engage in proving myself. I am the proof.
Your Creator is very real. You don’t have to understand every detail. You don’t have to have it all figured out. All you have to do, as was spoken at my church last night, is “make room” for Jesus. As you do that you will find in your own life the reality that God’s words are pure and they do not return empty-handed. You can engage not in debate but in this glorious transformation from thorn bushes to stately pines. Your life can become all the evidence you’ll ever need of the powerful and life-changing love of God. Every hard and hurt place in your life can be saturated in Him.
He’s like rain.