It was almost summer and everywhere I looked I could see the lovely fresh bright green of spring. We had joined in with nature and added some new seedlings to our garden. We had worked hard and felt satisfied with our efforts. The garden looked so crisp and clean.
Early the next morning when I went outside, I found our Maltese Poodle called Wally, busy digging up all our new seedlings. He is usually an adorable bundle of white curls with impish brown eyes, but today he was causing havoc in our garden. I shouted at him to stop. I was really angry with him. Why would he want to dig up our plants? As I got near him, he rolled over and started moving his front muddy paws in a way that showed he was begging for mercy and forgiveness. He looked so cute and funny that immediately my anger left and I scooped him up with a warning to “Never do that again!”
I had read Isaiah 54 many times but this time verse 8 seemed to stand out for me above the rest; ‘In a little burst of wrath I hid My face from you for a moment, but with age-enduring love and kindness I will have compassion and mercy on you says the Lord, your Redeemer’.
What jumped out at me was the comparison that I saw between the words ‘In a little burst of wrath . . . for a moment’ and ‘age-enduring love.’ I thought about the difference between a burst, (a moment), of wrath compared to age-enduring love. God’s whole purpose and desire is to show us age-enduring love and kindness, even though sin causes Him to be angry. His desire is to have compassion and mercy on us, even though we feel separated from Him through our sin.
The verse before that says ‘For a brief moment I forsook you, but with great compassion and mercy I will gather you (to Me) again’ (Isaiah 54:7). How do we bridge the gap of being restored back to Him, of experiencing His great love, compassion and mercy, experiencing Him gathering Him back to you? We find the answer in 1 John 1:9 ‘If we (freely) admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and (promises) and will forgive our sins (dismiss our lawlessness) and (continuously) cleanse us from all unrighteousness (everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action.)’
Prayer: Father, we thank You that You are a restoring, redeeming God. As we come to You and confess our sins, thank you that Your Word says You will totally forgive us ALL our sin, cleansing us and restoring us back to Yourself. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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