Thus our incomes are suffering...
So as I sit here and read Isaiah, this is the scripture that took my breath away:
(Additionally, not only are we suffering from awful drought, our politics are in a mess, there is a lot of hatred and racial tension, and much poverty in and around our city but also our country is in a financial and political hotpot of corruption etc... For me this scripture spoke into all those things.....)
Isaiah 33 v 14(b) - 16: (14b)... Who among us can dwell with that devouring fire? Who among us can dwell with those everlasting burnings?
(15) He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, who despises gain from fraud and from oppression, who shakes his hand free from the taking of bribes, who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed and shuts his eyes to avoid looking upon evil.
(16) [Such a man] will dwell on the heights; his place of defence will be the fortress of rocks; his bread will be given him; water for him will be sure.
My jaw metaphorically hung open. Recently, I have been encouraged to, when reading the word, ask myself what do I think God is telling me. So I asked myself, "Tracy, what do you think God is saying to you here?" And I broke it down like this...
Who among us can live in these tough circumstances?
- he who walks righteously, does what is right despite tough times
- he who speaks uprightly, speaks good, positive things, sticks to the truth
- he who won't sink to fraud or oppress someone for gain, desperation does not lead to dishonesty
- he who will not take a bribe, no matter how desperate they are, or how attractive the offer
- he who stops his ears from hearing bloodshed! I'm not too sure but I think this would mean don't get all involved and focus on the evil out there
- he who shuts his eyes to avoid evil. I think in desperate times, people give up on themselves and sink to darker levels and accept things they shouldn't etc. So, no compromise in what you watch, listen to, or do.
And the result of behaving as the man does above, in these tough circumstances?
- Such a man will dwell in the heights, (safety?)
- Such a man's defence will be a fortress of rocks (safety?), He will be safe from what is happening around him
- To such a man his bread will be given - he will be fed, his needs met
- To such a man water will be secure - he shall not thirst...
Isn't that astounding? Actually, if we read the word of God often enough, and recount all the Lord has already done for us in the past, we should not be shocked. We should definitely be grateful, thankful, and praise the Lord for His goodness. But we should not be surprised!
Recently I was stressing about a situation and as the Lord does, He came through for us at the last minute. I was truly humbled, and amazed. How He came through for us was not what I expected at all. I remember telling the Lord, I am so sorry I doubted You. You have NEVER let us down. Why would You let us down now? This time, I am choosing to trust the Lord no matter how things seem and in that, I have peace. Sure, there is a little anxiety floating around there somewhere, but I try to speak to it with words from God's word: He shall not leave us nor forsake us... He will make a way, where there seems to be no way.... He longs to show His grace and mercy toward us... He will not let us be put to shame, for His name sake...
I am so thankful for His word that encourages and holds me up. He is my fortress and my comfort. In Him will I trust. Join me today as we journey forward in our walk of faith, trusting the Lord to provide for us, and protect us in all circumstances.