“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.”
photo by photo bucket.com
“I feel like I am drowning right now.”
“I am a hot mess most of the time.”
“I was really burned in my last relationship.”
Do any of these sound familiar? Do statements like these ever come out of your mouth? Do they keep you from doing things God is asking you to do? Do they keep you from living life like Jesus did?
I am guilty of using each of those sentences at times when I have felt the Holy Spirit nudging me to do something I wasn’t ready or willing to do. When I have too much of my own stuff on my plate (which I tend to do repeatedly) I will quickly get to the drowning stage of life, with no room left for what God has planned for me.
When I let my emotions control my words and my actions, when I let the lies Satan likes to tell me rule my mind, I will quickly become a hot mess. Someone not worthy of leading or guiding or furthering the kingdom.
When there is a new relationship opportunity, another woman who is stuck and needs a friend, I remember the times before I have been burned, when the relationship turned too needy, too volatile or too unhealthy and I steer clear of the new one.
If you are like me, and I really don’t think I am alone, we spend way too much time trying to avoid the fires that burn us and the raging rivers that threaten to drown us. And not enough time fully trusting in God.
These words from God through the prophet Isaiah are the ones I turn to in difficult times. They are a reminder, a promise, that you are a child of God. He created you, he formed you from birth. He has redeemed all of your mistakes. He has called you by name. You belong to him.
These words however, are not a promise that life will be easy. Look closely at these words. Isaiah says when you pass through the waters, when you walk through the fire. High waters, and scorching fires will come, there will be times when your life is a hot mess. But God will always, always be with you. He loves you and he will protect you.
There are times when the rivers that drown us and the fires that burn us are of our own doing. When they are a direct result of the choices we have made and the desires we have pursued. But even during these times, God is right there. Loving, protecting, and redeeming. He has redeemed you, he has set you right before him. He has redeemed every one of your mistakes. Every. Single. One.
Sometimes the rivers and fires we face are a direct result of following God. In those times remember that he will equip you for every good deed. He will give you all you need to accomplish what he has set before you. Turn to him and he will be right there.
Whatever fires or raging rivers you might be going through right now, remember this promise from God and rest in the knowledge that he is with you.