Today we move on from hope to think about peace and we have another tremendous passage from Isaiah.Think of a time in your life when you’ve anxiously been awaiting news. Maybe you remember getting exam results, or hearing that a health scare was a false alarm, or that something that had gone missing was found.
Call to mind how you felt when you received the good news.
Today’s reading is about the proclaiming of the Good News, the gospel in fact: gospel means ‘good news’. It’s amazing how often I forget that’s what the Christian message is – it’s good news. Hearing good news not only brings joy but also peace. Think of that feeling of relief you get when you’ve been awaiting news and it turns out to be good!
Image by Luke Hayfield Photography
This is partly what Isaiah is referring to here. The reading ends with the beautiful (messianic) image of God as a shepherd, cuddling His lambs, bringing peace to those who belong to Him. Pray for God’s peace to rest on you as you think of the Good News of Jesus Christ coming into the world.
You who bring good news to Zion,He tends his flock like a shepherd:
go up on a high mountain.
You who bring good news to Jerusalem,
lift up your voice with a shout,
lift it up, do not be afraid;
say to the towns of Judah,
“Here is your God!” See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power,
and he rules with a mighty arm.
See, his reward is with him,
and his recompense accompanies him.
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young. (Isaiah 40:9-11 NIV)