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by Mary Alice McGinnis
When my daughter was growing up, she took horseback riding lessons. In her second year of lessons, her instructor organized a small horse show for all her students. The show’s scheduled start time was 8:00 am sharp, which meant getting up at 4:00 am to get prepared.
The night before, I tossed and turned. All the excitement of the following day spiked my adrenaline into overdrive. The seemingly endless “to do” list swirling around in my head would not let my mind nor my body rest. “Did I pack enough snacks? Do we have all our equipment? What if we forget something? What if I don’t wake up in time?”
As a Mom I wanted this to be the perfect day, the perfect experience, for me and for my daughter. And I needed to control it all.
The next morning, feeling excited but quite sleep deprived, we packed the car, and left on time so we would arrive promptly for the show. The sun had not yet arisen, so it was pitch dark. While driving, my mind was still racing through the “to do” list of things we needed to do once we arrived.
My young daughter shyly asked her directionally challenged parent, “Mom, are we going the right way?” Blindly confident that I had everything under control and knew what I was doing, I dismissed her warning and responded, “Yes of course sweetheart, don’t worry. We will be there soon.”
Thirty minutes later my internal alarm signals started to go off. Something was not right. I opened my eyes (figuratively) and I started to ask myself, “Why is this taking so long? We should be out of the city by now, on the country back roads nearing the stables.” Suddenly, I WOKE UP out of my blind, sleepy, self-absorbed, control seeking stupor and realized I did not even know where I was! Once I got my bearings, I discovered that we were on the opposite side of town headed in the completely wrong direction. At the exact moment, my daughter asked me if we were going the right direction, I had missed a critical turn onto another highway. Instead of heeding her warning and heading north to our destination, we continued west for another 30 minutes. I humbly fessed up, apologized to my daughter, found a place to get turned around and headed back in the correct direction, now an hour behind schedule.
How many times in life do we do this? We get so wrapped up in our own agenda, our own self-absorption, our own need to be in control, that miss the warning signs that we are headed off track?
Isaiah was speaking such a warning to his people in today’s reading, and to us.
"You turn things upside down, as if the potter were thought to be like the clay!
Shall what is formed say to the One who formed it, 'You did not make me'?
Can the pot say to the Potter,
'You know nothing'?"
How blindly self-deceived are we to go about life as though we are in control.
As though we, mere clay, have any concept of what the Master Potter, the Creator of the billions of galaxies, is up to.
Yet, God does not leave us in our dark blindness. Isaiah says, “In that day the deaf will hear the words of the scroll, and out of gloom and darkness the eyes of the blind will see.” (v. 18)
Jesus came as the light! He came to open the eyes of the blind! Even those afflicted with spiritual and not just physical blindness. We are not left to ourselves; we need only wake up and listen to His Words of the scroll and allow our eyes to be opened to see.
Then God gives this incredible promise through the prophet Isaiah:
“Once more the humble will rejoice in the Lord; the needy will rejoice in the Holy One of Israel.” (v. 19)
Where is Jesus calling you today? Is there some darkness of self-deception that is blinding you? Bring your humble heart back to the Holy One. Allow Him to restore your sight and give you unending JOY that can only be found in knowing and trusting in Him.
Lord Jesus, help me not be among those who foolishly think I can hide my sins from You. You are the Potter; I am but the clay. You know me through and through. Yet You came for me. You died for me. Teach me to surrender myself to Your goodness and love and experience Your JOY that will last forever!
Prayer through Song – Take your heart to God in prayer through the words of this song today. “Come to the Altar”