God is stretching me and finding ways to help me grow in faith. How, you may ask? Somehow He got me to do something entirely out of my comfort zone. I volunteered to help in the children’s classroom this year at BSF, which begins this week. Not just help, mind you. I am a teaching co-leader with one other woman. So, along with all the other activities in the weekly two-hour class with 10 two-year-olds, we will alternate each week giving the Bible lesson/scripture and hymn time (if you knew me and how musically challenged I was, this would make you laugh out loud). This is definitely an opportunity to learn to trust God to be strength in my weakness.
I also have recently come to a crisis in my life that has forced me to see my brokenness. At first I feared this made me unworthy to serve. But this is the beauty of the gospel! The gospel, I am learning, is not just a moment of conversion but a way of life. This is the central message of Isaiah, which is not so coincidentally, the book we’re studying in BSF. Isaiah’s name means: “The Lord is salvation.”
Throughout the book of Isaiah, God reveals Himself. He wants to be known. He wants me to know Him. Through this study and through a step of faith in helping two-year-olds learn about God right alongside me, I will get a better look at who God is and, therefore, have a better understanding of who I am in Christ. Just a glimpse at the incomparable holiness of God will help me put life in godly perspective. As the teaching leader for BSF said: Begin with God and you will have a right view of people and circumstances; begin with people and circumstances and you will have a wrong view of God.
I know I need start with God.
In the sixth chapter of the book, Isaiah tells of his encounter with the Lord. He sees the Lord in all His glory. And his reaction was to realize his own unholiness. After a five-chapter-long ministry of telling people “Woe is you,” Isaiah said, “Woe is me.” One of my small group Bible study leaders often points to this revelation, so I have become familiar with its significance.
When truly confronted with God’s holiness, there is no possibility of pride, not even an ounce. There is only the realization that we are desperately in need of God’s salvation. He wants His people to be restored to Him in true worship, which requires a broken spirit and a contrite heart.
I am right where God wants me.
… Because it is in my brokenness that I have to rely completely on Him. Instead of measuring my worth as a Christian by my ability to uphold certain moral or spiritual standards, I am free to grasp the glorious promise of salvation by grace. It is then that I can grow spiritually because God is able to do His work in me.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9