When we feel far from God, restoring intimacy seems doomed to failure. We feel like prisoners, devoid of life. Sometimes the Lord has brought us to this place!
When I speak to the rivers and say, ‘Dry up!’ they will be dry. (Isaiah44:27-NLT)
The Lord does this with an intention of restoration.
… I say to Jerusalem, ‘People will live here again,’ … I will restore all your ruins!’ (Isaiah44:26-NLT)
This is a message of hope, but can we listen? The Lord’s message comes with a context,
“Pay attention, O Jacob, for you are my servant, O Israel. I, the Lord, made you, and I will not forget you.” (Isaiah44:21-NLT)
The Lord calls on Jacob, ‘the deceiver’ whose life he had turned around after creating a threat Jacob could not worm his way out of. Having won him, he will not forget him. Jacob struggled with God through a night of anxiety till finally he surrendered and received a new identity – Israel, ‘he struggles with God and overcomes’.
We cannot orchestrate our own struggle with God only prayerfully give him permission. The Lord does the hard work of surfacing the issues, then he looks for a response.
I have swept away your sins like a cloud… Oh, return to me, for I have paid the price to set you free.” (Isaiah44:22-NLT)
In Christ the price was paid. There is no chasm for us to cross, yet returning to freedom in God requires a surrender and many hang on to the end before being willing to give it.
You can read my source Bible study at this link.