One of the joys in Scripture Union is opening the Word of God together in our team Bible reading meetings and praying for God to speak to us as a small community. Listening to his voice and sharing are always important. Sometimes the passage of the day surprises us. This happened when we opened the Bible for the first time in 2020 as a team. It was Isaiah 48. God is speaking to Israel reminding them of the past and revealing the future. We had been sharing our thoughts and people had made some good points, when somebody asked the question, “So, what was it all about?”. God directed me to verse 20: “Leave Babylon, flee from the Babylonians…” That was ‘the best’ that God wanted to teach them and ‘the way’ he wanted them to go – back to the Promised Land. For those who were hesitant and scared of uncertainty, the very next verse reminded us that when God initially led Israel through the desert, they were not thirsty because he gave them water.
At the start of this year with many plans and expectations, this passage felt like a prophetic word. What is the way God wants us to go? What is our Babylon? What things do we need to leave behind and flee from to move into the future? What is his ‘best’ for us?
When the future seems uncertain or scary we need to remind ourselves of who God is and how he is beside us, fulfilling our needs, both in our personal lives and in our ministry. And that is how we pray – our praise to God lays the foundation for our boldness and certainty in what we ask. The past, the present and the future are brought together in praise and prayer. And you can hear Jesus’ words: “…I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Field Development Coordinator, Former Soviet Republics