This year I decided to read the Bible in its entirety. I am using BibleStudyTools.com and reading The Message. The website set up my schedule for me once I indicated my start date and I have the schedule bookmarked. Each night before I go to bed I read my assigned passages. I read anywhere from two to five chapters of the Bible each night, and I am currently on Isaiah 28.
Here is the really cool thing about this … God is speaking to me in my daily situations through my daily reading. This is not an accident. God is using His word to speak to me every single day about the exact thing I am going through every single day and encouraging me. He is lifting me up and guiding me and reminding me that He is always in control!
I spent the last few weeks reading the books of Judges and Kings. Reading about all of the constant evil and betrayal met me right where I was in my life. And then something happened this week in regard to my situation to open things up a bit. Although I was elated at part of it, I was discouraged at another.
And then I started reading my assigned scriptures. I was blown away with the encouragement I received from God. He told me that, no, my suffering is not quite over. But he is waiting on His mount, watching, waiting for just the right moment when He will arrive. Those poor, oppressed nations will be vindicated. Those arrogant, prideful and evil nations will fall.
God said this to me this morning in Isaiah 25… (I encourage you to read its entirety, especially if you are not quite at your moment of victory, because this is what is coming next.)
1 God, you are my God. I celebrate you. I praise you. You've done your share of miracle-wonders, well-thought-out plans, solid and sure. 2 Here you've reduced the city to rubble, the strong city to a pile of stones. The enemy Big City is a non-city, never to be a city again. 3 Superpowers will see it and honor you, brutal oppressors bow in worshipful reverence. 4 They'll see that you take care of the poor, that you take care of poor people in trouble, Provide a warm, dry place in bad weather, provide a cool place when it's hot. Brutal oppressors are like a winter blizzard 5 and vicious foreigners like high noon in the desert. But you, shelter from the storm and shade from the sun, shut the mouths of the big-mouthed bullies. 6 But here on this mountain, God-of-the-Angel-Armies will throw a feast for all the people of the world, A feast of the finest foods, a feast with vintage wines, a feast of seven courses, a feast lavish with gourmet desserts. 7 And here on this mountain, God will banish the pall of doom hanging over all peoples, The shadow of doom darkening all nations. 8Yes, he'll banish death forever. And God will wipe the tears from every face. He'll remove every sign of disgrace From his people, wherever they are. Yes! God says so! 9 Also at that time, people will say, "Look at what's happened! This is our God! We waited for him and he showed up and saved us! This God, the one we waited for! Let's celebrate, sing the joys of his salvation. 10 God's hand rests on this mountain!" As for the Moabites, they'll be treated like refuse, waste shoveled into a cesspool. 11 Thrash away as they will, like swimmers trying to stay afloat, They'll sink in the sewage. Their pride will pull them under. 12 Their famous fortifications will crumble to nothing, those mighty walls reduced to dust.
God is in control. God is in control. Just be patient. God is in control.
I am immensely thankful to God for the daily encouragement he provides me. Without Him, I wouldn't be able to make it through my day.