Advent 2018 – Day 18

God’s “I WILL” promises keep coming. Here’s another for you to ponder during this Advent season.

Every year we receive Christmas letters from friends with news of how God has blessed them in the past twelve months. Recently, we had a face-to-face reunion with old friends over lunch. We hadn’t seen Roger and Bobbie for about thirty years. Back then, we babysat for each other’s kids as they toddled about the house. Today, those kids have grown up and have children of their own!

What gave us great encouragement was seeing how, despite the decades apart, God had been faithful to each of our families during the intervening years. Roger shared amazing ways God had protected their children. My husband and I talked about how God had blessed us with a new home and renewed health.

Isaiah 41 is a wonderful chapter about encouragement. It begins with people inspiring each other, saying, “Be strong!” or “It is good!” The message seems to be a positive one until you discover that the craftsmen were in the process of making wooden idols! Verse 8, however, begins with the word “but.” Suddenly the passage shifts its focus. God speaks and says that if the people want real encouragement they shouldn’t look to each other but to him. In verse 10, he says, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t look anxiously about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”

Look around you today. Do you see anyone who is feeling low and needs a word of hope? Can you point them to the only true source of encouragement?


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