Sunday, March 22, 2015

Singing Hills and Applauding Trees

Monday, March 23, 2015
The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth.  They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry.  It is the same with my word.  I send it out, and it always produces fruit.  It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.  You will live in joy and peace.  The mountains and hills will burst into song, and the trees of the field will clap their hands!"
Isaiah 55:10-12 (NLT)
I was reminded of two things recently:
First:  It is a lot of work to write 600 words every morning, put it on a blog site, record it like a sermon, process the video and not repeat yourself (too often).
This first realization was a gift from my friend, David.  I am preaching a series on the seven deadly sins, and happened to mention in the sermon on “sloth” (laziness) that this was one of my natural proclivities – I can be “at rest” anywhere, anytime, for no particular reason, other than I like it and it’s easier to procrastinate from a motionless state! 
David had the kind thoughtfulness to catch me after the sermon and he reminded me that a lazy person would not do this every morning.  With all due modesty and humility I can muster – the guy’s right.  This is a lot of work, but I need it like my next breath – this quiet, early morning reading, praying, reflecting, and writing-out what I hear in my soul. 
In the final analysis, this isn’t “work” per se, it is more the working-out of my life-song; this is what I do to praise God from whom all blessings flow.  If I didn’t do this, the rocks would be taking my place, calling out His name in worship.  I must do it! 
So…thank you David, yes, I’m not lazy – but the “work” is really my blessing.
A second realization was:  I have a VERY HIGH view of Scripture
This second realization happened in one of those niggling clergy “debates” over whether the Bible is actually “the Word of God” (or if it is just a collection of man’s writings about God). 
It didn’t take long for my “high view” to surface – that the word is THE WORD
I really don’t know how or why some people would even want to get to a place where they denigrate the authority of God’s gift to us of His revealed truth.  But there’s no denying it, such “ministers” muddy the water when people hear their ministerial doubt rather than proclamation of holy writ.  And I really don’t know why they would ever want to be in ministry in the first place if they have such doubt.  As Goethe said, preacher, tell me what you believe; I have enough doubts of my own.
God proclaims his truth, like the waters from heaven with their life-giving arrival to the fields, will accomplish what he sends it to do…provide us with living growth; He provides us with rivers of living water that flow from the throne and back to His presence, all the while nourishing, growing, and transforming everything it touches. 
And the crop of Jehovah’s doing is a connection of blood-colored eternal life, streaming from Heaven to Bethlehem, Calvary and back to Heaven.  And the Word of God catches us along in that stream and we are One with the Father.  It is His life-song!
And so, if you’re listening to this devotion today, the music you heard at the start (and if you hang in another 20 seconds will hear at the end) is my bride at the piano, doing her life-song, playing Trees of the Field[2], a song inspired by Isaiah’s fields rejoicing and trees applauding.
Yes, life isn’t bad at all when the music is right!

For You Today

How about joining the hills in song and the applauding trees as we give praise to our Father, the blessed One who accomplishes everything in us and for us that we need to be his vineyard

[1] Title Image: By Tadam (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons
[2] Writen by Stuart Dauermann, published in 17 hymnals (see more here at

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