For a long time I have kept silent, I have been quiet and held myself back. But now, like a woman in childbirth, I cry out, I gasp and pant. I will lay waste the mountains and hills and dry up all their vegetation; I will turn rivers into islands and dry up the pools. I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them (Isaiah 42:14-16, NIV).
In societies of instant gratification, we often expect and even demand that God respond immediately to our expectations. Of course, He rarely does. Our hearts wonder if He loves us, really loves us. Isaiah’s complex book tells us in chapter 42 about God’s passion toward His people. It isn’t about flash emotion, but about the non-wavering resolute love of God to complete all He has promised toward us. The words at the beginning of the above passage remind us that our Lord’s love is not compromising, His intention is not negotiable.
The lyric of verse 14 is profound, “like a woman in childbirth I cry out, I gasp, I pant.” This is a passion that has been restrained, one that has a birth date of its own. As we face life, frustrated at the seeming victory of injustice, the Lord gives us a glimpse into His journal, His songbook. He expresses not proper theology, but His heart, His passion, His resolute commitment that will be completed, and one day will be unleashed. From despotic leaders, cancer, crime, broken relationships and dreams never realized, we can forget—our weak heart’s memory becoming discouraged. May God write the truth of His heart’s passion for us on our hearts, and may we remind each other of it regularly and live lives that are passionate toward Him and those He loves.
- In what circumstance are you struggling to remember that the Lord is passionate for you?
- What events from your past remind and encourage your heart that He is passionate for you?
- How might God be calling you to live more intimately with Him so that you can more fully experience His passion for you?