Wednesday, July 15, 2009

W.o.G. Wednesday:

Well, I really think God is teaching me how to slowly wean myself off the Internet--He just shuts it down altogether, leaving me with time to spend exclusively with Baby C and in His Word. Since my absence, I've already lost three followers--something that would have majorly bummed me out before...even though I knew it shouldn't!

Anyway, with all that said, my internet was back up for an hour today and gone again by the time i got back from lunch with a wonderful gal from church (thanks, Christina!). So, my ever-gracious twin volunteered to guest blog about her fave verse from the Bible. Thanks sis!

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twin writing now: Favorite verse of the Bible?? Identifying that and nailing it down to just one passage is a daunting task...my Bible has more underlined verses than non-inked-under ones, but whenever I think of my favorite book, Isaiah comes to mind. I love dwelling on how God has redeemed His people throughout time and space and how He continues to and will always redeem those given unto His hand. I love reading about how the nation of Israel is so much like the Church today and its individual members. And I am always amazed at passages that reflect images and provide references of Christ to the ancient believers in Old Testament times. It is for these reasons that I am drawn to the book of Isaiah, full of history, stories of an obstinate yet wondrously saved people, and Messianic prophesies. An often quoted chapter brightens my day and yet convicts me at the same time whenever I come across it... When I taught Bible to middle school students, one of the memory verses I had them learn was Isaiah 40: 28-31. And while I adore its truths, I am particularly taken by several other of the famous chapter's verses.
the opening:
Comfort, comfort my people,
says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that
her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the LORD's hand double for all her sins.

I love reminders that our loving God has wiped out our debt entirely!

verses 4 and 5:
Every valley shall be raised up,
every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
the rugged places a plain.

And the glory of the LORD will be revealed,
and all mankind together will see it.
For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

It is hard not to be a fan of Handel's Messiah, and his brilliant chorus related to these verses is one of my favorites, as it gloriously speaks of the work that God will do to renew his creation and reveal beyond our wildest imaginations His majesty.

verses 6b-8:

All men are like grass,
and all their glory is like the flowers of the field.

The grass withers and the flowers fall,
because the breath of the LORD blows on them.
Surely the people are grass.

The grass withers and the flowers fall,
but the word of our God stands forever.

There is nothing like a jolting reminder of our impermanence and God's infinite power and plan.

verse 9:
lift up your voice with a shout,

lift it up, do not be afraid;
say to the towns of Judah,
"Here is your God!"

Another song from Handel's Messiah proclaims this verse and I am struck by how much our Lord and his works ought to be on our minds and our hearts and rung out loudly from our lips. Nothing is like Him--why do I hold back from that sharing that proclamation?

verse 11:
He tends his flock like a shepherd:
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young.

A very comforting passage for mothers!
verses 21-26:
Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
Has it not been told you from the beginning?
Have you not understood since the earth was founded?

He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth,
and its people are like grasshoppers.
He stretches out the heavens like a canopy,
and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

He brings princes to naught
and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing.

No sooner are they planted,
no sooner are they sown,
no sooner do they take root in the ground,
than he blows on them and they wither,
and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff.

"To whom will you compare me?
Or who is my equal?" says the Holy One.

Lift your eyes and look to the heavens:
Who created all these?
He who brings out the starry host one by one,
and calls them each by name.
Because of his great power and mighty strength,
not one of them is missing.

This life and its fleeting, flying, fading glory is worthless--it is hopelessly fruitless to put our trust in anything but a God who will never change and who created and maintains the whole world and has always known and always will know the days and hours of its inhabitants...there is nothing like recognizing how big God is, how small we are and yet, miraculously, how much he cares for us.





2 people think...:

Aura said...

Great post...thank you so much for writing this. I will go back and read it in detail...AS I'm getting ready for work. I also love reading the book of Isaiah and it the older I get...the part of being compared to the grass that withers becomes so clear. Our life on earth is so short....This morning, though after a good night rest I feel like fresh grass...LOL...I'm so thankful for the many ways the Lord blesses and knows our needs.

Julia said...

Great job A (twin)! Also, I can't really wrap my brain around losing a follower. I lost one today too. Deep inside I wonder what I did to make them drop...you'd have to go to some trouble to un-follow a blog. That's just weird.