“New Days” Meditations 4: A New Path?
Isa 43:19 “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
We concluded yesterday considering the possibility that God is moving in the wilderness that is the world around us, using new things that are happening. There is a difficulty from our point of view in this and it is not seeing God in what we consider as natural events. The Pandemic caused by man’s careless, environmental chaos – floods, fires, heatwaves – are things we put down to our own activity, and yet the Bible is quite clear that God uses human sinfulness for our benefit. The Cross is the classic example of this: “This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge: and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.” (Acts 2:23) i.e. God used the sinfulness of mankind to bring about Jesus’ sacrificial death on our behalf. Will He do it with some of these other ‘problems’?
So is God moving to bring change at this this moment, not yet through the expected routes of revival or renewal, but through world changing events. But He said through Isaiah that He was “making a way”, creating a path down which He might travel.
Do I see a path being formed down which He might travel? Maybe revival to convict the world, maybe renewal to bring alive the Church, or maybe a fresh pathway into my thinking that gives Him access to my inner being, the hidden places I try to keep to myself? Is this the famous path of Robert Frost (google it) “less travelled”, the ‘narrow road’ (Mt 7:14) that will lead to, or bring, life? Can I pray, “Lord, stir in me an expectation of a new way that brings new life to me and through me”?
I realize we are talking about world-size, world-changing issues here and we may feel these things are so big that they are beyond us. Yet, the two illustrations I have used involve us we cannot escape them – the Pandemic, and environmental change. The world around us is being forced to consider these things. We have seen it in the scientific and medical struggles that have gone on against the Pandemic. There is now much talk about coping with environmental change. Perhaps if we have not been struck by flooding we may be feeling casual about it, but they ARE life-changing issues and we as the Church ought to be considering our role in it all. Are these sorts of things, are things that create paths into the thinking of those around us, that create desperation, preparing hearts to become open to the call of the Lord to repent and return to Him, for that is what all these things should do, that surely is why He is coming.