January 28, 2021
“Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?”
Several weeks ago we looked at this warning God offers to Israel in Isaiah 43:18-19. God describes letting go of what once was as an essential step to seeing what God was doing that was brand new.
After losing everything and being exiled from their homeland we are not surprised by the notion that all Israel would have wanted was to go back to the way things used to be. But instead, God invites them to look ahead.
“Open your eyes,” God says, “I am doing a new thing!”
A few chapters later God sharpens the focus of this new future even more. In Isaiah 49:6, God says,
“It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will also make you a light to the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”
What God began with one nation was always meant to be for the sake of all nations. In his original covenant with Abraham in Genesis 12, God articulates that intent in verse 3 by saying, “all peoples of the earth will be blessed through you.”
Unfortunately, somewhere along the way Israel lost sight of this vision.
Instead of living as God’s people sent out to bless the world, they lived as those hoping God would protect them from the world.
“It is too small a thing…” God says, “to go back to who you once were.”
Your vision is simply too small.
My dream for you was always about so much more.
Like you, I want to know what God is doing, what God will do, when God is going to do it, and how God is going to get it done!
We want God to give us answers and so often miss that our answer is God.
And so, once again today, I want to invite you to lean in with me. We have entered a new year. We are stepping into a whole new world. Through us, God is seeking to build a new church.
And the vision remains unchanged…
“That my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”