PREPARE TO LISTEN
Light a candle and pray: O send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling.
Request for Presence: You are my help and my deliverer; O LORD, do not delay!
READ Isaiah 35:1-10
The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, the desert shall rejoice and blossom; like the crocus it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the LORD, the majesty of our God. Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who are of a fearful heart, “Be strong, do not fear! Here is your God. He will come with vengeance, with terrible recompense. He will come and save you.”
Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy. For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water; the haunt of jackals shall become a swamp, the grass shall become reeds and rushes. A highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Holy Way; the unclean shall not travel on it, but it shall be for God’s people; no traveler, not even fools, shall go astray. No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there. And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
As I’ve struggled along the path of Christian spirituality, I’ve often wondered whether I’m still headed in the right direction. I wonder, because so often the way doesn’t ‘feel’ quite right. Yes, I know I have this longing for God and desire to live with God’s wisdom, but, I wonder still, is it the right way? I treasure the assurance of the prophet’s words “no traveler, not even fools, shall go astray.” I keep walking the path in hope and faith that I, from the tribe of the ransomed, will return to a place that is new, with more joy and more gladness. I keep taking the next step and then another, and another, one step at a time.
Where are you on the journey? In what ways does this passage assure you?
RESPOND TO JESUS IN PRAYER.
Sometimes Lord, I think I’m a fool and I fear losing the way. Thank you for the assurance that I won’t lose my way because you’re the Guide on this journey of faith. I long to sing with all your ransomed ones and experience everlasting joy and obtain joy and gladness, with no more sorrow and sighing. Help me wait for you this Advent. In your holy name, Amen.
BE SILENT AND STILL (for as long as you want). Simply be in the presence of Jesus, who loves you, regardless.