Thursday, June 03, 2010
Today’s Topic: All Is Well
Today’s Text: Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds. (Isaiah 3:10)
There it was. It came exactly when I needed it. It’s happened before: many times. But it seems that the emotions of the current day always overshadow the previous experiences of blessing. Why is that? Why are we so quick to move from faith to frustration?
But God knows. God sees. And God says, Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds.
So there it was. Smack dab in the middle of a discouraging moment, it arrived. It started with a couple of posts by my wife on Facebook, and then came a response from a friend. They were all words of encouragement that healed my heart. They were words that motivated more ministry. God knew I needed them. I praise Him that people listened when He urged them to write.
Isaiah must have felt the same thing I did. Since he started writing what God was saying about the spiritual condition of His people, only 6 out of the previous 63 verses have had any positive flavor to them. That’s less than 10%. Sometimes life feels that way – 90% trouble and a splash of good.
But right here, in the middle of what I think is the most discouraging discourse on the condition of mankind, we have this message of hope from our Lord. Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds.
As Isaiah describes the natural harvest of a life of rebellion against God, he is reminded of the truth of the law of harvest for the righteous as well. Everything we do, everything we say, and everything we think produces a harvest of something. It will result in disaster or in delight. There will be a harvest of suffering or satisfaction. God is establishing our understanding of one of His irrefutable laws – Whatever we sow we reap: whatever we plant we harvest.
There are times in the middle of this mess we call life that it seems all the good we are doing and all the ministry we invest in is only adding to the mess. At the bare minimum it seems like we are just maintaining our current level but making no advances. It seems more and more discouraging every day as we look at the condition of the world and the spiritual darkness that surrounds us. I don’t think I have ever seen a time when the overall attitude of the media and the general public has moved more quickly from the hope of change to hopelessness.
Christians are not immune to such feelings. We quickly lose sight of the promises of God when we focus on the problems of life. We spend more time thinking about the falling stock market than we do praying for the rise of the Kingdom of God. We focus more on the ecological disaster of an oil spill than we do on the spiritual anointing oil of the Holy Spirit that brings joy (…anointing you with the oil of joy. Hebrews 1:9). We worry about food and clothing and shelter when Jesus said to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and He would provide all the other things we need.
But in every one of those moments of misery – those times of trouble – Jesus comes along side of us and says, “If you are living righteously, it will be well with you. You will enjoy the fruit of your deeds.”
If you will just slow down a minute or two today and listen, you will hear Him speaking to you. Keep your focus on Jesus. Keep living for Jesus. Keep serving Jesus. Even if nothing seems to change or no one seems to notice, Jesus does. Your labor is not in vain in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58). You will enjoy the fruit of your righteous deeds.