Tuesday after Misericordias Domini
Scripture: Isaiah 30:19-26 (NKJV)
19 For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem; You shall weep no more. He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; When He hears it, He will answer you.
20 And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, but your eyes shall see your teachers.
21 Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left.
22 You will also defile the covering of your images of silver, and the ornament of your molded images of gold. You will throw them away as an unclean thing; You will say to them, “Get away!”
23 Then He will give the rain for your seed with which you sow the ground, and bread of the increase of the earth; It will be fat and plentiful. In that day your cattle will feed in large pastures.
24 Likewise the oxen and the young donkeys that work the ground will eat cured fodder, which has been winnowed with the shovel and fan.
25 There will be on every high mountain and on every high hill rivers and streams of waters, in the day of the great slaughter, when the towers fall.
26 Moreover the light of the moon will be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun will be sevenfold, as the light of seven days, in the day that the Lord binds up the bruise of His people and heals the stroke of their wound.
Often the Lord feeds His people with “the break of adversity and the water of affliction.” At times this is experienced as temptation from the devil, the world, and the sinful flesh. At other times the Lord tests one’s faith through life circumstances such as lack. He allows temptation and tests faith so that He might strengthen the believer’s faith and purify it from misbelief, despair, and other great shame and vice.
In every adversity, be it temptation from the devil or testing from the Lord, the Lord promises to be gracious to those who cry to Him in faith. You have this promise of God, “He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; when He hears it, He will answer you.”
Though the Lord wound, He promises to heal. Though He kill, He promises to make alive. It is as we sing, “Though a heavy cross I’m bearing and my heart feels the smart, shall I be despairing? God, my Helper, Who does send it, well doth know all my woe, and how best to end it” (TLH 523:2). The Christian trusts that the Lord will bring relief from every temptation and rest from every cross of testing. Instead of feeding you with the “bread of adversity” He promises “bread of the increase of the earth.” Instead of making you drink “the water of affliction” your Good Shepherd points you to the “rivers and streams of water” on “every high mountain” and “on every high hill.” By this the Lord means that He will graciously care for your every need of body and soul.
Almighty God, graft into our hearts such a love for Your Name, that temptation and trial may not discourage our faith, but strengthen our confidence in Your gracious promises. Amen.