Reflecting on Is. 40: 1-5, 9-11
What an image that is. Mountains and hills dissolving into straight, easy paths to walk? Deep valleys raising up so that people of all degrees of mobility can easily pass through them? Isaiah must have had some experience with rugged and unnavigable terrain in order to offer such a delicious image.
He spoke these words of comfort—that geographic boundaries would dissolve so that the Exiles could return to Jerusalem in peace—in order to encourage those who were afraid to set out for home after fifty years of exile in Babylon.
These aren’t words just for a long-ago people. They make perfect sense for us, too. What important life challenge are you afraid to embark on right now? What has the Spirit been nudging you towards? Take Isaiah’s words to heart so that you can achieve that to which you deeply sense you have been called.
Imagine if those Exiles had not been nudged by that beautiful image. There would have been no Second Temple, no restored priesthood, and no descendants of David (Mary and Joseph) to travel to Bethlehem under orders of the Emperor so that the prophecy of Micah might be fulfilled: “But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you One will come forth from long ago, from the days of eternity (5:2,3).
Think back on the bold moves you had the grace to make in your life. You stayed up late and finished that term paper when you were aching for sleep. You got married. You had kids. The same God with you then is with you now. Step out, and watch the mountains move.
What grace has God given you in your life?
Kathy McGovern ©2023