Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins. A voice of one calling: “In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. Isaiah 40:1-4 NIV
These verses begin with a proclamation of comfort to the Jews and a prompt to comfort God’s people. The initial audiences of these verses were being instructed to comfort the Jews as they returned from captivity. God has pronounced that their suffering was finished, and they were now pardoned. This is a message that we can all relate to in Jesus’ coming to pardon us and we will all fully comprehend when we reach heaven, where God will wipe away every tear. I want to begin this devotional by clearly stating that many of our hurts and deepest anguish are NOT a result of our own sin. They are a result of living on a planet still feeling the sting of sin, but we know Jesus has overcome and ultimately, every knee will bow and tongue confess that He is Lord. Until that wonderful day, we can still be the victims of disease, natural disasters, and of horrific tragedy. As Christians we cling to the verse in Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. This does not say that all things are good. It says that believers in Christ can be comforted that He has ultimately overcome evil and if we love and trust Him, He will turn it into something that is eternally good in our lives, even if it is physically or emotionally excruciating for a while on earth.
Contributed by – Shani Ford
In the midst of my pain I found a God who fiercely sought after me. In 2017 I was in a broken place lost, living without purpose, and wanting to be found. Through the love of God I was able to find a peace that would change a rebel into a righteous women. I am from California, but currently living in Chicago, Illinois. Now walking a path to help change people perspectives on what it means to walk in God’s grace. I believe since I was able to find happiness, and true joy that everyone I encounter should and can find it too. Through The Sanctuary I have been able to grow in my walk while pursing the life that God has called me to.