Monday, December 16, 2013

Isaiah 44:21-22

"Remember these, O Jacob and Israel; for thou art my servant: I have formed thee; thou art my servant: O Israel, thou shalt not be forgotten of me.
I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto me; for I have redeemed thee."
Isaiah 44:21-22


Here, God is pleading with his ancient covenant people to return to him.  It doesn't matter how far they have strayed... he won't forget them.  He will forgive them everything, if they will just return to him.
Whether by blood or by adoption through baptism, each of us can be part of the covenant... we are invited to be part of the chosen people.  And so, God asks us to remember his words.  He asks us to remember that he is the creator... that he not only created us, but also redeemed us.  He saved us from our own sins.  He can blot them out, and he can also erase the distance and the pain and the emptiness that we feel.  He offers us not only leadership, but meaning.  He can show us the good in the world.  He can always bless us with hope.
I think we forget sometimes that with God it isn't possible to become permanently lost.  We might not be able to find the way, and we might head the total wrong direction, purposely headed into the swamp, tempting the alligators to snack on us by throwing them marshmallows and calling out to them.  We can get eaten and swallowed up if we choose to, but if we even once start getting an inkling that this is a bad idea, and we reach out to God, he'll save us from the alligators, get us home, and might even get us another bag of marshmallows to be used more correctly, perhaps, in our hot chocolate.  It might take a while.  I am not saying that God teleports us instantly from bad to good or saves us immediately from danger, so it is okay to try anything.  Definitely not. :)  We should probably be careful and not feel marshmallows to alligators in the first place.  However, I *am* saying that God loves us even when we are acting pretty stupid... and he will help us home if we make an effort to change and reach out to him.  He wants us to return to him, more than anything.  And he is willing to forgive all of it, if we will only repent.
Today, let's remember who God is.  That he created us, that he redeemed us, and that he always has the power to save us, even from our own very worst mistakes.  Let's turn to God, and stop teasing the alligators.

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