Friday, December 15, 2017:
They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. On that day the root of Jesse shall stand as a signal to the peoples; the nations shall inquire of him, and his dwelling shall be glorious.
Isaiah 11: 9-10
Lately it seems that each week there is a new terror attack or act of violence that claims the lives of innocent people. Those who love God and try to live righteously may get discouraged living among the turmoil and wickedness of our day. Hope may begin to seem unrealistic. Yet our hope is not in society. Our hope is in the Lord of all creation; a God who is still in charge and is actively at work transforming the world.
At times of discouragement, it is important to look at the “bigger picture” of God’s plan to realize that righteousness will eventually prevail. Isaiah 11 is about God’s Peaceful Kingdom, the “bigger picture,” and contains a message of hope concerning what God will do for his children. No pain or destruction; what a wonderful thing for which to hope!
This scripture passage made me think of a few stanzas of the beloved Christmas carol, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, penned by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:
And in despair I bowed my head:
“There is no peace on earth, I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
of peace on earth, good will to [all].”
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
the wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
with peace on earth, good will to [all].”
Prayer: God, thank you for your marvelous promises. Please help me to trust in these promises and hope for your Peaceful Kingdom. Help me to live as an instrument of your peace. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Creative Call-to-Action: Sing or listen to the Christmas carol, “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.” Write down your thoughts about how you can help bring about the Peaceful Kingdom.