“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland” (Isaiah 43:19)
Throughout its history, Israel struggled to follow God. Its devotion waxed and waned. Though the Bible speaks of wonderful periods of obedience and faith, it also speaks of grave mistakes and disobedience. Through all this, God never abandons His people. Those who were called by His name, He again and again restored to Himself.
In the forty-third chapter of Isaiah, God pledged to His people that he was planning to do something new. Israel was struggling yet all was not lost. Things may have looked bleak but God spoke. God communicated a message of hope… a promise to bring something new. Certainly, God had been faithful. Without a doubt, many times He had done amazing things on the behalf of Israel. Yet here, in a time of need, He called His people to put those things behind them and look for the new. God, the one who mightily moved in the history of Israel, reminded them that it was not the past which should be remembered but the God who moved in the past. The forty-third chapter ends with a profound statement. Here, God lets His people know that He is about to change the game. It may not happen in the way the people expected, yet God was going to do something new.
Our world is forever changing. Things consider new and innovative quickly become old and dated. The 8mm film, once groundbreaking technology, gave way to the VHS which over time became obsolete. The replacement, the DVD, lasted for a time before it was overcome by the Blu-ray and digital files. Without warning, things change. Millen Baptist, the church which I serve, has unexpectedly found itself in midst of one of these times. However, in this forever changing world, it is good to know that we serve a never changing God. God is faithful. His promises will be fulfilled. His ways will not be thwarted. Brother and sisters in Christ, God is still in the business of reaching people and we each have a part to play. Though our church will deeply miss our pastor as he follows the call of God elsewhere, it is important that we not forget that God is moving.
At Millen Baptist and in each of our lives, God wants to do a new thing and our faith in His faithfulness compels us to look for that.