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  • Writer's pictureGWL



Isaiah 49:8-16a

Sometimes we all feel kinda invisible... or unimportant - that our thoughts and opinions don’t much matter. We feel overlooked, at times… maybe even forgotten... sometimes by friends and family - certainly by our leaders.

Sometimes we even feel like God overlooks us, or ignores us. You can hear this in the honesty and transparency of the Psalms:

*Psalm 13:1, “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?”

*Psalm 10:1, “Why, Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?”

*Psalm 22:1, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (Sound familiar?) Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish? My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, but I find no rest.”

Truth is: sometimes we slip into dark, spiritually dry periods in our lives. And it feels like we’re in exile… like we’ve been abandoned by people we trusted… abandoned by those we’ve depended on and loved the most... abandoned by God.

God‘s Word certainly speaks to those who feel forgotten/abandoned.

The prophet Isaiah… ironically the very same prophet God used to chastise His people... the Prophet God called to prophesy about Jerusalem’s exile into Babylon because of their sinfulness - and their abandonment of God by worshiping idols and false gods. It’s kind of telling, that a people who felt abandoned, had plenty of experience in abandoning God!

But through Isaiah God also spoke of a “time of favor” – a time when God would save, and deliver, and help his people.

Another word for “favor” is grace. And in an appointed time to come… God would deliver Israel… by his grace… when the timing was right.

God’s people had wandered far from his grace. They were wandering in darkness and death... so much so that they would face an unimaginable separation from their home - the Promised Land - the land of their fathers and their faith. Their choices had led to a time of separation from the house of God itself, and had led to their feelings of abandonment.

But God had not forgotten his people.

God‘s covenant relationship with his people was/is stronger than sin (theirs and ours).

Sometimes it may seem like we’ve screwed up beyond any hope of repair. Sometimes things seem so dark, so broken, so irredeemable… That we don’t see a way out… we can’t conceive things being made new, or made right. But it only seems that way. God promises to bring us through the dark and into the light. Not just any light, but his light, his righteousness, his grace. God has not forgotten us, nor had he forgotten his people long ago.

There are always consequences for sinful behavior - and God’s people were about to face the music for their sin. But God never abandoned his Chosen.

In fact: God’s Word says (Galatians 4:4) that “in the fullness of time” - in other words, at just the right time - the chosen time - the appropriate time… a Savior came. God, through faith alone, by grace alone, to the glory of God alone… gave us his one and only Son… a signed... a sealed, stamped, and approved promise, that we are never forgotten or abandoned.

Jesus is God’s ultimate covenant to his people. God has not forgotten any of us: and thanks be to God, Jesus is God’s ultimate promise of redemption. God could no more forget you than a mother could forget her child. God could no more abandon you than a faithful captain could abandon his ship!

And our Savior once and for all sealed the deal on God‘s grace, and love, and mercy. The marks of his love are still visible in the palm of his hands.

As you and I walk in Christ, we walk as People of the Covenant... a found people, a redeemed people... a remembered people. We are filled with hope, and assurance, and peace. As the light of the Lord leads us through this present darkness.

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