Isaiah 15:6 “For the green grass has withered away; The grass fails, there is nothing green.” I dwell with words of desperation, destruction, and death. I sink to the bottom of the river, lie on a bed of rocks and sand, and look up as the cool water runs clear and smooth over me. In the green grass or when the grass fails, a smile slips down my chin even when a gnat flies over my glass half empty.
Isaiah 13:11b “I will halt the arrogance of the proud, And will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.” Though the promises of rest, the buoyancy for the moment makes hope spring up; the depths cry out, “Caution! Remember the tares of pride are a harbinger of a doubtful harvest.” Now, I’ve raised a lot of gardens; I know what it takes to keep out the weeds. It takes a continual stroke of the hoe to break up the unruly, unyielding roots of neglect. What if instead of spreading the good news of the gospel, I’m beating others with my interpretations and opinions? Isaiah 14:5, 6 The Lord has broken the staff of the wicked, The scepter of the rulers. he who struck the people in wrath with a continual stroke, he who ruled the nations in anger is persecuted…”
I should know not to boast in anything. Even in religion. My Christianity has been tested and my testimony made void. We are reminded not to boast, “except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world, (Galatians 6:14-15,” so why do we flood the earth with arrogance?
Unsettling truth: Isaiah predicts destruction of the pride of Babylon, Assyria, Philistia, and Moab. Before their pride is tied to me like a cement slab as I’m tossed into the river, I long to believe that “The whole earth is at rest and quiet… breaking forth into singing,” (Isaiah 14:7). I long to believe that all things are purposed for my good, (Romans 8:28). I long to believe that the news at the end of the day will set everything right, in order, and in sync.
Paul directs us to challenge these beliefs, “Be generous and do good; bare one another’s burdens; rule in peace and mercy. And most of all “Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.”
Grace over me, grace under me, grace before me, grace from me crowding out the roots pride.