Daily Devotional with Dr. Charles Stanley @ InTouch.org
Friday, September 2, 2011
Read | Isaiah 30:21
Almighty God formed you. He knows your talents and weaknesses, as well as every detail of your situation and potential results of any decision you might make.
Your Creator knows what is best for your life. His plan for you, which is motivated by wisdom and love, is executed with perfect timing. This last part can be hard for us to accept, especially when it involves waiting.
But patience is often part of the plan. In some seasons of life, God teaches us to trust and to yield our longing for immediate gratification. We demonstrate surrender and humility before Him when we submit to his timetable.
Of course, there is another option. God gave us the free will to choose His plan or step away from it. When life does not follow the desired path, we can try to make things happen in our own power. But this never works as we hope. In fact, it always leads to disappointment and difficulty, causing us to miss God’s best for our lives. Though this choice is tempting at uncomfortable times, the results are undesirable.
Scripture contains rich promises that we can claim throughout life—and God always keeps His Word. As His followers, we are to believe with faith, anticipate with hope, and wait quietly with patience (Rom. 12:12). In the meantime, we listen and obey.
Embrace whatever “season” God has you in right now. If it’s a time of waiting, choose to learn patience, trusting that His plan for your life is beautiful. Walking in His will requires us to remain sensitive to His voice. Our loving Father protects us from making mistakes when we readily listen to Him.
Isaiah 30 (NASB)
Judah Warned against Egyptian Alliance
1 “Woe to the rebellious children,” declares the LORD,
“Who execute a plan, but not Mine,
And make an alliance, but not of My Spirit,
In order to add sin to sin;
2 Who proceed down to Egypt
Without consulting Me,
To take refuge in the safety of Pharaoh
And to seek shelter in the shadow of Egypt!
3 “Therefore the safety of Pharaoh will be your shame
And the shelter in the shadow of Egypt, your humiliation.
4 “For their princes are at Zoan
And their ambassadors arrive at Hanes.
5 “Everyone will be ashamed because of a people who cannot profit them,
Who arenot for help or profit, but for shame and also for reproach.”
6 Theoracle concerning thebeasts of theNegev.
Through a land of distress and anguish,
From where come lioness and lion, viper and flying serpent,
They carry their riches on the backs of young donkeys
And their treasures on camels’ humps,
To a people who cannot profit them;
7 Even Egypt, whose help is vain and empty.
Therefore, I have called her
“Rahab who has been exterminated.”
8 Now go, write it on a tablet before them
And inscribe it on a scroll,
That it may serve in the time to come
As a witness forever.
9 For this is a rebellious people, false sons,
Sons who refuse to listen
To the instruction of the LORD;
10 Who say to the seers, “You must not see visions”;
And to the prophets, “You must not prophesy to us what is right,
Speak to us pleasant words,
11 “Get out of the way, turn aside from the path,
Let us hear no more about the Holy One of Israel.”
12Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel,
“Since you have rejected this word
And have put your trust in oppression and guile, and have relied on them,
13 Therefore this iniquity will be to you
Like a breach about to fall,
A bulge in a high wall,
Whose collapse comes suddenly in an instant,
14 Whose collapse is like the smashing of a potter’s jar,
So ruthlessly shattered
That a sherd will not be found among its pieces
To take fire from a hearth
Or to scoop water from a cistern.”
15 For thus the LordGOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said,
“In repentance and rest you will be saved,
In quietness and trust is your strength.”
But you were not willing,
16 And you said, “No, for we will flee on horses,”
Therefore you shall flee!
“And we will ride on swift horses,”
Therefore those who pursue you shall be swift.
17 One thousand will flee at the threat of one man;
You will flee at the threat of five,
Until you are left as a flag on a mountain top
And as a signal on a hill.
God Is Gracious and Just
18 Therefore the LORD longs to be gracious to you,
And therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you.
For the LORD is a God of justice;
How blessed are all those wholong for Him.
19 O people in Zion, inhabitant in Jerusalem, you will weep no longer. He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry; when He hears it, He will answer you. 20 Although the Lord has given you bread of privation and water of oppression, He, your Teacher will no longer hide Himself, but your eyes will behold your Teacher. 21 Your ears will hear a word behind you, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right or to the left. 22 And you will defile your graven images overlaid with silver, and your molten images plated with gold. You will scatter them as an impure thing, and say tothem, “Be gone!”
23 Then He will give you rain for the seed which you will sow in the ground, and bread from the yield of the ground, and it will be rich and plenteous; on that day your livestock will graze in a roomy pasture. 24 Also the oxen and the donkeys which work the ground will eat salted fodder, which has been winnowed with shovel and fork. 25 On every lofty mountain and on every high hill there will be streams running with water on the day of the great slaughter, when the towers fall. 26 The light of the moon will be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun will be seven times brighter, like the light of seven days, on the daythe LORD binds up thefracture of His people andheals the bruiseHe has inflicted.
27 Behold, the name of the LORD comes from a remote place;
Burning is His anger and dense is His smoke;
His lips are filled with indignation
And His tongue is like a consuming fire;
28 His breath is like an overflowing torrent,
Which reaches to the neck,
To shake the nations back and forth in a sieve,
And to put in the jaws of the peoples the bridle which leads to ruin.
29 You will have songs as in the night when you keep the festival,
And gladness of heart as when one marches to the sound of the flute,
To go to the mountain of the LORD, to the Rock of Israel.
30 And the LORD will cause His voice of authority to be heard,
And the descending of His arm to be seen in fierce anger,
And in the flame of a consuming fire
In cloudburst, downpour and hailstones.
31 For at the voice of the LORD Assyria will be terrified,
When He strikes with the rod.
32 And every blow of the rod of punishment,
Which the LORD will lay on him,
Will be with the music of tambourines and lyres;
And in battles, brandishing weapons, He will fight them.
33 For Topheth has long been ready,
Indeed, it has been prepared for the king.
He has made it deep and large,
A pyre of fire with plenty of wood;
Thebreath of the LORD, like a torrent ofbrimstone, sets it afire.