by Kathy Matuschka
Click here to download your printable verse to carry with you today.
I have seen their ways, but I will heal them (Isaiah 57:18a).
Read Isaiah 57:14–21
After the graphic description in yesterday’s text about the unfaithful behaviour of the Hebrew people, God replies: ‘I have seen their ways … but I will heal them.’ Really? It doesn’t sound as though God is surprised or overwhelmed about how badly we fail. God simply calls us back to our God-given identity as people of peace. Today’s text tells us that those who receive God’s healing are people of peace, whereas the wicked are like the tossing sea – unable to rest.
As I write this, I am on holiday in Queenstown, New Zealand. As I gaze at the beauty and grandeur of nature, everything falls into perspective, and it is not difficult to feel peaceful! But by the time these words are published, we will be beginning a new year, and many of us will be off and running into the important and the urgent things that consume our time. Some of us will be preparing to pack for the General Convention of Synod, a place that can bring out our most adversarial, competitive tendencies.
Often ‘our ways’ can be related to our fear that someone might be receiving more of God’s blessings than we are. Our behaviours can reflect our insecurities. Hear the word of the Lord: God has seen our ways, but God will heal us.
According to today’s text, God lives in both the high and the lowly places (verse 15). While we may prefer to live in the high places, there is nowhere that God will not go to be with his beloved people.
Is something striking you low today? Anxiety? Frustration? Shame? Recurring sins? Others’ attitudes towards you? Tell God, then leave it with God to heal and restore. Then look around you to find ways you can be part of God’s restoration and healing for others.
Dear God, you know all about me and you continue to heal and bless me. Thank you that you are present with your people in both the high and the lowly places. Holy Spirit, please expand my heart so that I may share your peace and healing with those I meet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
For most of her life, Kathy Matuschka has preferred to give witness to her Christian faith using her ears and her hands. As a person for whom writing has not come easily, she now delights in learning to share her gospel hope using words as well. Kathy serves within the LCA Queensland District as Assistant Director for Ministry & Mission.