Isaiah 7: 7-8
Yet this is what the Sovereign Lord says, “It will not take place, it will not happen, for the head of Aram is Damascus, and the head of Damascus is only Rezin. Within sixty five years, Ephraim will be too shattered to be a people.” NIV
One of the things that you get with a WordPress blog is something called a “dashboard.” It keeps track of all kinds of nifty things for you … first and foremost, the number of posts you’ve written. In the case of this blog, that number has grown steadily since February … it now reads 231. Even though this is a number that I track daily as I search out the Bible’s reminders not to worry, I saw it yesterday, and it surprised me. 231 is a number ever so much closer to 365 than I thought I might ever be … it occurred to me that there may be more than 365 reminders not to worry contained between the covers of my NIV Bible, but that I’d best find all of those that can be literally translated to contain the word “worry” now so that I won’t have missed any of them in the final accounting.
So, I went back to the New International Reader’s Version of the Bible, where verse 8 reads, “The capital of Aram is Damascus. And the ruler of Damascus is only Rezin. Do not worry about the people of Ephraim. They will be too crushed to be considered a people. That will happen before 65 years are over.” NIRV
Here, Isaiah has been sent with this message from God to speak with Ahaz, the king of Judah. In verses 5 & 6, a threat against Judah is documented, “Aram, Ephraim and Remaliah’s son have plotted your ruin, saying, ‘Let us invade Judah, let us tear it apart and divide it among ourselves and make the son of Tabeel king over it.'” NIV
But, Isaiah delivers Gods comforting message … “It will not happen.” It is interesting to me that the reason it will not happen is that “the head of Damascus is only Rezin.”
Only … such an interesting word.
I do some volunteer work with people who are in transition — between jobs. Frequently, people will introduce themselves using the word “just.” I’m “just a tester,” or “just an assistant.”
I’m always quick to point out that they should never use that word in an interview … “I’m a tester,” is an infinitely stronger statement. But, it takes confidence to deliver that line effectively, confidence that people in transition often do not have.
When we encounter hard circumstances in life, our perspective gets adjusted by the world … in those times, we are more prone to use words like, “just” or “only.”
But, this verse reminds me that when God is on our side, as he was on Judah’s, there is not a moment that I am “just” anything.
I am a cherished child of the Living God. I am redeemed. I am loved.
That’s what I’ll think about today.