When is the last time that you had a very strong conviction about an idea or an activity but it felt like no one else wanted to listen to you or to believe you? Your opinion might have been based on your own valid experience, simply intuition, or perhaps it was something that you had seen or read that caused you to want to influence the choices or actions of other people. It is never easy to stand alone. It takes God-given courage and perseverance to speak out in love to others who do not want to hear or believe what you have to say.
Did you know that the Old Testament prophet named Isaiah had the guts to stand alone in very tough times for 40 years? God had called him to remind His chosen people, the Israelites, that their need was great and that repentance was necessary. They needed to understand that although they had everything they thought they needed, they were, in fact, in desperate need to return to God. With eloquent language Isaiah described their condition with these picturesque words, “Woe to those who rise early in the morning to run after their drinks, who stay up late at night till they are inflamed with wine. They have harps and lyres at their banquets, tambourines and flutes, but they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD, no respect for the work of His hands.” Even when he went on to warn them that God promised this would mean not only severe hunger and thirst but exile, the people continued in their arrogant disobedience. (Isaiah 5: 11 – 13) While many of the kings and the aristocracy chose to ignore Isaiah’s clear words, there was always a small minority of people who would hear God’s voice and respond in faith and obedience to Him.
What gave Isaiah the willingness and strength to keep on doing what his God had clearly called him to do when there was no visible response? What made him willing to “keep on, keeping on”? What gives you the courage to stand up for your convictions even when you feel alone? Join with us as we discover the answers to these and many other questions in our 12 week study of Isaiah’s warnings and prophecies.
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