Lenten Devotional, Day 29

Isaiah 60


1Arise! Shine! Your light has come; the LORD's glory has shone upon you. 2Though darkness covers the earth and gloom the nations, the LORD will shine upon you; God's glory will appear over you. 3Nations will come to your light and kings to your dawning radiance. 4Lift up your eyes and look all around: they are all gathered; they have come to you. Your sons will come from far away, and your daughters on caregivers' hips. 5Then you will see and be radiant; your heart will tremble and open wide, because the sea's abundance will be turned over to you; the nations' wealth will come to you. 6Countless camels will cover your land, young camels from Midian and Ephah. They will all come from Sheba, carrying gold and incense, proclaiming the LORD's praises. 7All Kedar's sheep will be gathered for you; rams from Nebaioth will be your offerings; they will be accepted on my altar, and I will glorify my splendid house. 8Who are these who fly like a cloud, like doves to their shelters? 9I'm the hope of the coastlands. Ships from Tarshish are in the lead to bring your children from afar, their silver and gold with them for the name of the LORD your God and for the holy one of Israel, who has glorified you. 10Foreigners will rebuild your walls, and their kings will serve you. Though in my rage I struck you down, in my favor I have consoled you. 11Your gates will be open continually; day and night they won't close, to bring to you the wealth of nations, and their kings led in procession. 12The nation and the dynasty that won't serve you will perish; such nations will be devastated. 13Lebanon's glory will come upon you, cypress, elm, and pine, to glorify the site of my sanctuary, and I will honor my royal footstool. 14The children of your tormenters will come bending low to you; all who despised you will bow down at your feet. They will call you The LORD's City, Zion, of the holy one of Israel. 15Instead of being abandoned, hated, and forbidden, I will make you majestic forever, a joy for all generations. 16You will suck the milk of nations, and nurse at royal breasts. You will know that I am the LORD, your savior and your redeemer, the mighty one of Jacob. 17Instead of bronze I will bring gold; instead of iron I will bring silver; instead of wood, bronze; and instead of stones, iron. I will make peace your governor and righteousness your taskmaster. 18Violence will no longer resound throughout your land, nor devastation or destruction within your borders. You will call your walls Salvation, and your gates Praise. 19The sun will no longer be your light by day, nor will the moon shine for illumination by night The LORD will be your everlasting light; your God will be your glory. 20Your sun will no longer set; your moon will no longer wane. The LORD will be an everlasting light for you, and your days of mourning will be ended. 21Your people will all be righteous; they will possess the land forever. They are the shoot that I planted, the work of my hands, to glorify myself. 22The least will become a thousand, and the smallest a powerful people. I am the LORD; at the right moment, I will hurry it along.



Dawning Radiance


What a turnaround!  What a vision of redemption; restoration; comeback story of the year!  The bread in your hands right now marks the turning of tears—joy for each step on the long trip you’ve been on.  And your lips dry with song and praise and waiting breath-fully and praying desperately and wondering if you are in it—the cut. If you are a part of the peace and regrowth or if you are left with the taskmaster and the underbrush decaying.  We have been buried in sadness before.  We were buried in waning—in the mockery of juggernauts.  Even friends did not believe in us.  This cool house with its light lifting as with the humming of far-away children’s hearts.  The walls are close, but we are far-off.  Nearness and the harvest and the hands that bake a feast in the bitter cold.  You think of relinquishment, but God salvages the least.  He envisions for the smallest.  A thousand voices.  A force to be reckoned with.  You are the work of His hands, be patient, as he will come quickly and move swiftly when the time is right for your life to turn that corner and the invisible is made so relevantly visible for His glory.