Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Remnant That Remains

I was reminded today of God's amazing character of faithfulness, promise, mercy, grace and hope for the future. He clearly hates death and final endings that destroy relationships. For example, in Genesis, fed up with the sinfulness of the world, he brought a cleansing flood to wipe out the face of creation on earth. Yet, he was unwilling to surrender hope for relationship with his creation, so he preserved life with Noah's family and the animals on the ark.

As I read in Isaiah 6:9-13 today, I was once again struck by God's love for a happy ending. He's told Isaiah a depressing, disturbing message: that the hearts of the people will be hardened, they will be blind and deaf to God's work, needing, but not receiving healing. They will be exiled from their homes and all they know and love will be made into a wasteland. I'm sure just about the time Isaiah was thinking, "Lord, do you have any good news?" he was awed by God's final statement,
"The country will look like pine and oak forest with every tree cut down—every tree a stump, a huge field of stumps.
But there's a holy seed in those stumps."
Even with a message of destruction, God offers a hopeful, happy ending. Amazing. After all that humanity has done to deserve annihilation, he offers mercy - hope for a future for the remnant that remains. God is truly in the life-giving, life-preserving line of work.

What stumps in your field hold a seed of promise?

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