#47 I Will Restore You (part 1) for Dec. 13, 2018
In Isaiah 54, we can read God’s love song to Zion, his estranged bride, telling her how he is going to restore her who is estranged because of disobedience. Although this was written to the nation of Israel, many of us can relate with the Holy Spirit touching our hearts with these verses.
All who believe in the Lord are part of his “bride” so it’s no wonder we can feel these verses were written directly for us. We’ve been redeemed by the Servant/Messiah, and now must continually choose to live under the terms of his covenant in order to experience its blessings.
“Sing, O Barren woman, you who never bore a child” touched my heart, also. I’d been unable to get pregnant duriing the first 11 years of my first marriage. We adopted twice, and these babies brought much joy, satisfying my need for children, but I still wanted to experience pregnancy and nursing a baby. Finally, God granted my desire in 1976. What joy these three children brought!
However, when my divorce happened five and a half years after my younger son’s birth, I was essentially barren again because my children went with their dad, 1000 miles away.
Isaiah commands the barren one to sing, (Isa. 54:1). How could I sing after experiencing divorce and bereavement—I, who had been so strongly opposed to divorce, and then who experienced another divorce within three years? Yet, the second half of this verse felt like a promise to me that I would someday feel like singing again. I began to hope that my life would no longer be fruitless.
I didn’t know what to make of that promise other than that things would get better. But by 30 years later, I’d gained seven step-children besides my first three, plus twenty-five grandchildren.
Many of the nation of Israel had died in exile, and only a remnant chose to return when the opportunity arose. But Isaiah predicted this small city of Jerusalem, called the once barren woman, would be blessed by God’s restoration. God promised they would “spread abroad to the right and to the left” and people the land. I recently read that there are now more than eight million people in Israel.
Judith Vander Wege
(Tune in again on Tuesday Dec. 18 for part 2 of this blog.)