I write today, knowing that many of you are tired, weary, and yes, even disheartened. I will confess that I, too, have experienced moments of overwhelming discouragement as I witness the evidence of the Enemy's plans to kill, steal, and destroy. The world has suffered through nearly two years of a pandemic that leaves us with so many questions and concerns. We have lost family members and friends to a disease that no one can really explain, and it has cost us so much -- lives, treasure, freedoms, and confidence in those who have been appointed over us. There is a real spiritual darkness associated with this phenomenon, and at times, it seems never-ending -- at least that seems to be the devil's strategy for now.
Then, to add dismay to misery, and right before our eyes, we no longer recognize our nation. Once seen as the light and hope of the world, our country now appears to have abandoned the last of its principles and righteous standing among the nations. It's no wonder we [who walk in our Kingdom power and authority] are weary! We have spent hours in fervent prayer, battling in the spiritual realms against the forces and powers of darkness who are hell-bent on carrying out Satan's hatred against mankind. We have declared the glory and majesty of our God Most High; we have warred against the wickedness we have openly seen on display. And now the spiritual warriors are hearing the cries of the people for comfort and reassurance -- "The Enemy looks like he's winning! Is revival still a possibility?" "When will God answer our prayers?" "Has the world become so wicked that the Lord's mercy and grace will now be replaced with His judgment?"
Believers and unbelievers, alike, are feeling the stress. I know I speak for so many who are standing on the wall, and who will never abandon their post or their assignment. Like the prophet Isaiah, in chapter 40, we have been given instructions by God to comfort the people; to reassure them. Indeed, that charge is doubled! Verse 1 reads, "Comfort, O comfort My people," says your God. These are words that are as necessary today as they were nearly 2700 years ago when Isaiah spoke them. Sometimes the souls of God's people are so distraught, when faced with a level of evil they've never known, that it is incumbent upon us to comfort them because it is God's will that they be comforted -- even in the worst of times. And that comfort must jointly consist of the conviction of our faith along with bold words of reassurance and encouragement.
So, forgive me if I borrow from the esteemed prophet Isaiah, as I speak to those who are weary. We need to understand that all nations will one day be judged before Almighty God, not only for how they treated His chosen people, Israel, but for how they treated their fellow man. I don't need to point out all the wicked ways of this nation. If you are a righteous follower of Jesus Christ, then you know the list is long and we deserve His discipline and punishment. But, just as YHWH showed the ancient Israelites that the sentence of "her wickedness had been taken away, and her service in warfare was finished", He will be willing to deliver us from our sins and iniquity.
It is not God's will that He remain in conflict with those He calls His children. Just as with Isaiah, we who are called to comfort the faithful [the true believers], we proclaim that the obstacles set before us will be removed and a way will be made for our God to manifest Himself in this realm ... "And the glory and majesty and splendor of the Lord will be revealed, And all humanity shall see it together". It may look like the world is on a fast pace towards ruin, but God still sits on His throne and His mercy and love for His people endures forever. We may not know how long the darkness will prevail, but we are assured that by His light we can [and will] walk through the darkness (Job 29:3).
We must come to know and believe that just as Jesus has prepared a way for us at the end of the world's wickedness, it is our duty to prepare a way for Him now! We must get in fighting shape; we must rid ourselves of our despondency and hopelessness by receiving God's divine Grace [which is His power in us to accomplish what we cannot do on our own]. We must rid ourselves of any pride or conceit regarding our own merit, and help those held captive and in bondage to prepare for their deliverance. God longs to stir up courage and determination in our hearts to break through any discouragement the Enemy is setting before our eyes. We can bring the Light of the Lord, even in the midst of despairing darkness!
The power of the Enemy, and of men, is not to be feared, nor trusted. Isaiah declares not only that, to our God, "All the nations are as nothing before Him, They are regarded by Him as less than nothing and meaningless", but also, "Listen carefully, the Lord God will come with might, And His arm will rule for Him. Most certainly His reward is with Him, And His restitution accompanies Him". When we understand that God has no rival and His Word stands forever, and is incorruptible, then His promises become our hope and our confidence that we will be delivered from our circumstances.
God called on Isaiah to remind the people of his day that "It is [God] who reduces dignitaries to nothing, Who makes the judges (rulers) of the earth meaningless (useless)". Rulers and authorities on earth are no equal for the Might of our God. "Scarcely have they been planted, Scarcely have they been sown, Scarcely has their stock taken root in the earth, But He merely blows on them, and they wither,
And a strong wind carries them away like stubble". Then the voice of the Lord declares, “To whom then will you compare Me, that I would be his equal?” says the Holy One.
Rulers and authorities on the earth will come and go. Throughout the history of the world, those who have chosen to act against Him have all been humbled, and brought low by the mighty hand of God. And so it will be until the end of time when all will stand before Him for judgment. Let us give glory to His sovereignty over them!
In these days when our souls and spirits are wearied and may be burdened by what we see happening on the earth, I want to remind you of what God told Isaiah to say to the people: "Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become tired or grow weary; there is no searching of His understanding. He gives strength to the weary, and to him who has no might He increases power. Even youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, but those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] will gain new strength and renew their power; They will lift up their wings [and rise up close to God] like eagles [rising toward the sun]; They will run and not become weary, They will walk and not grow tired".
We must comfort ourselves, and each other, with the knowledge that our God is an Almighty God; an Everlasting God, whose power reigns over all. In fact, He has absolute, complete, and total power over all and that power is sufficient to see His people through all the difficulties of this life. So, don't beat up on yourselves when you have those moments of despondency... we, who point the way to Jesus, are in the cross hairs of the Enemy, and our flesh can become weary and tired. But when we know our duty to represent Him, and rely on our faith in Him, and commit ourselves to be guided by His Holy Spirit ... then our spirit will be strengthened and renewed as we declare that He will not fail us. We will press forward, in the strength of the Lord, with perseverance, and we will reap the comfort, the hope, and the victory that we long for.
Isaiah 33:2 O Lord, be gracious to us; we have waited [expectantly] for You. Be the arm of Your servants every morning [that is, their strength and their defense], Our salvation also in the time of trouble.