Sermon on April 5 by Pastor Roland Eskinazi
Scripture: Isaiah 40:31
What do you do when you find it difficult to sing God’s song in unfamiliar times? (Psalm 137)
When you feel at the end of yourself:
1. LOOK AROUND – AND LIFE WILL WEARY YOU!
- ‘Do You really care?’ (v27)
What you believe about God and His promises are the most important thing about you, especially in crisis days.
‘…if we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up’ (Daniel 3:17)
- ‘It’s all just too much’
God’s people can be exhausted in stressful times, v30 ‘faint’ = exhausted and ‘weary’ = zero ability to cope.
Sometimes we suffer through no fault of our own. But even when afflicted through their own idolatry, God pursues His people with comfort and grace.
Why run anywhere else but to Jesus when life wearies you?
2. LOOK UP – FOR THE LORD WILL STRENGTHEN YOU!
- God is more than able to help (v12)
Who helps us? The God who can hold 1,35 billion cubic kilometers in His hand, who sends enough cosmic dust to sustain marine life in the oceans.
Don’t feel you have to have answers to the virus. Look to Jesus, whose isolation provides the cure to the worst virus of sin.
• God is more than willing to help (v10-11)
We need a God who is not only powerful, but the God of powerful tenderness who can push away all our fears.
‘What are the evils He cannot face? What are the dangers He cannot avert? The various members of His flock are as different in their names, dispositions, and temptations as they are in language, country and race. Yet the eye of Jehovah their Shepherd observes them – each of His scattered sheep – as minutely as if they were all gathered before Him in one place’ (Joel Beeke)
3. LOOK FORWARD – TO THE LOVE THAT WILL KEEP YOU!
- Wait patiently – even as you struggle (v31a)
Waiting will be full of tension and stress.
Take heart – Abraham, Moses, David, Hannah and Elijah exited their waiting in God’s timing.
‘Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord’ (Psalm 27:14)
‘Wait expectantly – for your faith to fly high (v31b)
An eagle who loves her eaglets will position the nest for eaglets to fall – so they may learn to fly. But her wings are ready!
‘Lord, I don’t know what your flight plan is. But if I am riding on your wings, that’s all that matters’.
Remember! The week ahead, moving to the Cross, is a reminder that the One who can comfort is the same One who deprived Himself of all comfort, so we may be forgiven, was healed, and finally ushered into a world of joy, with no sorrow or weariness.
‘Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest’ (Matthew 11:28)
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION AND DISCUSSION
- We are not in exile in another country i.e. Babylon, but we are exiled from a ‘normal’ way of life. How is this affecting you? What wrong conclusions might we draw from this? Why would it help us to meditate much on God’s character, more than the news? What new ways are you finding to help you do this?
- How many Bible characters can you think of, whose journey through life included waiting? Why is waiting on the Lord so necessary? What does it produce? Are there any New Testament passages that bear this out? How, in times of uncertainty, can you keep your faith vibrant, to be a witness to the lost and encourager to others? How did Jesus remain a comforter to His disciples, despite knowing the road ahead that lead to the Cross?