Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree. —Isaiah 55:13
Today’s text states that God causes the cypress tree and the myrtle tree to flourish where once thorns and briers encumbered the ground. This analogy reminds us that God can bring forth beauty and grace where evil once flourished.
Where cynicism once grew, hope and optimism can begin to emerge. Where sarcasm thrived, gentle words of healing can appear. Where lust grew rampant and unrestrained, pure love can spring up. This—a transformed life—is the living and lasting sign of God’s work, the memorial He seeks (Isaiah 55:13).
Do you long for this kind of transformation in your life? Then “seek the Lord while He may be found” (v.6). There are moments when we grow tired of the evil within us, and our heart aches for holiness. This is God calling, reminding us that He is near. At such times we must sink our roots deep into God’s Word and ask Him to conform us to His likeness. He says that “as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and . . . water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud, . . . so shall [His] word be that goes forth from [His] mouth” (vv.10-11).
Seek the Lord while He may be found. Plantings of grace can replace the thorns of our sinful nature
David H. Roper
Sift the substance of my life,
Filter out the sin and strife;
Leave me, Lord, a purer soul,
Cleansed and sanctified and whole.
God can transform a sin-stained soul into a masterpiece of grace.