May 10 I Tuesday
2 Kings 10-12
“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.” —Isaiah 40:1-2
Sometimes God’s love comes to us in the form of confrontation. While God’s heart is consolation and compassion, He will bring confrontation into our lives in order to awaken us, like a father disciplining his child. It is jarring and firm in nature; it is provocative and elicits a response.
The prophet Isaiah writes in chapter 40, a message of consolation and confrontation that speaks pointedly and uncomfortably to the realities of the human condition. Isaiah 40 opens with consolation as God says, “Comfort, comfort My people.” After over 400 years of silence between the book of Malachi and the book of Matthew, God’s comforting message to His people is, “A voice of one calling: ‘In the wilderness prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the desert a highway for our God’” (Isaiah 40:3). This verse is also quoted in the New Testament Gospel and is used to refer to John the Baptist, who was a forerunner to the arrival of Jesus Christ. John was sent ahead to prepare the way, make straight paths into the hearts and minds of God’s people, because the glory of God was about to be revealed through Jesus Christ.
What message does John the Baptist bring? Isaiah 40:6-8 reveals, “A voice says, ‘Cry out.’ And I said, ‘What shall I cry?’ ‘All people are like grass, and all their faithfulness 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 endures for ever.’”
This message draws us to how finite our life is; we are here today but gone tomorrow. The frailty of humanity is contrasted with the eternal nature of God’s Word. Our life is short, so we must make sure we are focusing on the right things, because we can be busy with the wrong things in life and become easily distracted by stuff. In fact, we live in a culture of distraction, with endless streaming platforms available to us, such as YouTube, Netflix, Disney+ and Amazon Prime, but these things are not eternal, God’s Word is. We need to put our hope in the only thing that is eternal.
May we take a moment and ask ourselves: What priority does God’s Word play in our life? Is it the primary focus of our life to cultivate and spend time with Christ or is it an afterthought, as we move through life that withers away like grass?
Prayer: Precious Jesus, I am like grass, here today and gone tomorrow. Only You alone are eternal. Cultivate in me a desire to spend time with You daily. Thank You, Lord.