40 Years Later

“Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been borne by me from before your birth, carried from the womb; even to your old age I am he, and to gray hairs I will carry you.  I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save.” Isaiah 46:3-4

There are moments when it seems that life is screaming at us, “Give in or give up.” Certainly many who read this today either are facing such times or you know someone who is facing tough times.  In these times we are desperate for truth!

Consider the truth of Isaiah 46:3-4.  Isaiah portrays God as a Father who created Israel and who carried Israel throughout her life.  This is well portrayed in the first four chapters of the book of Deuteronomy.

As one reads these chapters he or she might wonder, “Is this how God cares for his people?”  The fact is, Israel spent 40 years in the wilderness, walking or “Traveling around Mount Seir,” 2:1.  During this time God “carried Israel, as a man carries his son, all the way that you went until you came to this place,” 1:31.

As Israel approached the Promised Land, it was God who was giving them grace as He carried them along.  When Israel refused to obey God (Chapter 2) it was God who gave great grace in carrying them through their judgment.    Finally after 40 years it was time to go into the Promised Land.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, look at your life and consider all that God has carried you through.  This very day, you would not be here without God’s grace in your life.  Certainly this exercise will give encouragement, no matter how long you have been in your wilderness.

Once you consider God’s carrying, at least two things happen:  You gather strength in the now based upon where you have been. Check out Deuteronomy 3:27.  You grow in strength as you realize it is Christ in you that makes all the difference.  Paul understood this, “For when I am weak, then I am strong, for His grace is sufficient for me…” II Cor. 12:9

Your life and my life are a result of grace.  This grace is so clearly seen in looking into the hands of the one who has carried up through life.  Brother and sisters we can trust in the hand of Christ:

“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies, and your right hand delivers me.” Psalm 138:7

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