Thursday, February 19, 2009

Renewer of Hope

News. No good news -- save one Good News. Evil reports abound. Read the newsblogs, editorials, political reviews. Watch News Hour or CBS Evening News or Fox or that perpetual harbinger of delightful stories CNN.

Talk with your neighbor. Get reports from family members. Plenty of bad news is served up.

It's enough to get the most stouthearted down and discouraged.

I read the Bible and see the bad reports.
"And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too fierce for him, he took with him seven hundred men who drew swords, to break through to the king of Edom, but they could not. Then he took his eldest son who would have reigned in his place, and offered him as a burnt offering upon the wall; and there was great indignation against Israel."
That, my friends, is not a good report. I wept when reading that the other day. God's heart -- oh, His heart. What have His people done?

Sin -- darkness -- brokenness. All around, everywhere, in every place.

I was ready to throw in the towel, to barely hang on, to say the proverbial "Uncle!" But, God...

God, whose faithfulness extends to the heavens does not let go. Not only does He not let go, He pulls us up out of the miry clay. He places our feet upon a rock.

He reminded me today: He made the world and created mankind, placing him in it. Do you know what He did then? He saw that it was "good" -- His word, not mine; His thought, not mine. Has He changed His mind? No. He has worked with mankind, labored on our behalf, suffered for us, even died for us.

My heart breaks to see, through countless generations, the defiance toward God and His goodness. The choosing of darkness, gross darkness, time and time again leaves me gasping with pain. Divorce and abandonment, wars and brutality, drugs and alcohol, murder and abuse: it is not new to our generation, this gross darkness. Nor is it, honestly, unknown by me.

But He called this world, with us in it, good. I know, I know -- sin had not yet entered. But do you really think He didn't see it coming? And yet He called it good.

He is still Creator. He is still Ruler, Lord of all. He is still God Almighty who reigns on high and hears my prayer and cares for us. The sin breaks my heart. It breaks His more. The darkness repulses my senses. It repulses His more.

But He is not undone. His plan has not failed. He is watching, hearing, answering, moving. He is in control.

I sing the mighty power of God that made the mountains rise,
That spread the flowing seas abroad and built the lofty skies.
I sing the wisdom that ordained the sun to rule the day;
The moon shines full at his command, and all the stars obey.

I sing the goodness of the Lord that filled the earth with food;
He formed the creatures with his word, and then pronounced them good.
Lord, how thy wonders are displayed where'er I turn my eye:
If I survey the ground I tread, or gaze upon the sky!

There's not a plant or flower below but makes thy glories known;
And clouds arise, and tempests blow, by order from thy throne,
While all that borrows life from thee is ever in thy care,
And everywhere that man can be, Thou, God, art present there.


Isaac Watts

Take heart, O man. Hope again in Him; God reigns yet. Sin may taint this world for a season, but His reign is merciful and just. He is with us still.

And everywhere that man can be, Thou, God, art present there.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you, Darlene. What a "Breath" of fresh air to read from you in these days that we are in. It's a great reminder of just "Who" God was, is and will ALWAYS be!! Very encouraging. Thank you.....again!

7:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you. Your worshipping eyes bring focus and strength yet again...

6:11 AM  
Blogger The Growing Goodsons said...

These are the things my heart is crying out right now. Seeing this nasty, dark, sinful world and the people choosing those ways. It breaks my heart. I've been telling the Lord as much. Like you, HE has been renewing my hope too. Everywhere I turn the Lord is reminding me that HE is in control. This post was just one more of HIS reminders. I needed it, Thank you!


10:02 AM  
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