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Is God There?

I will wait for the Lord . . . . I will put my trust in him. Isaiah 8:17

Lela was dying of cancer, and her husband, Timothy, couldn’t understand why a loving God would let his wife suffer. She had served Him faithfully as a Bible teacher and mentor to many. “Why did You let this happen?” he cried. Yet Timothy continued to be faithful in his walk with God.

“So why do you still believe in God?” I asked him frankly. “What keeps you from turning away from Him?”

“Because of what has happened before,” Timothy replied. While he couldn’t “see” God now, he recalled the times when God had helped and protected him. These were signs that God was still there caring for his family. “I know the God I believe in will come through in His own way,” he said.

Timothy’s words echo Isaiah’s expression of trust in Isaiah 8:17. Even when he couldn’t feel God’s presence as his people braced for trouble from their enemies, he would “wait for the Lord.” He trusted in God because of the signs He’d given of His continuing presence (v. 18).

There are times when we might feel as if God isn’t with us in our troubles. That’s when we depend on what we can see of His works in our lives, in the past and present. They’re the visible reminder of an invisible God—a God who is always with us and will answer in His own time and way.

What signs can you see of God working in your life? How can they remind you that you can still look to Him for hope and comfort?

Father, thank You for always being there for me. Give me the strength to trust in You even when I don’t understand what’s going on.


The context of Isaiah’s commitment to “wait for the Lord” (Isaiah 8:17) is a prophetic warning to King Ahaz, during a period referred to as the Syro-Ephraimite war. Aram (present-day Syria) and Israel were battling the kingdom of Judah to pressure Judah to join in an alliance against Assyria (7:1–2). King Ahaz of Judah had refused and instead considered forming an alliance with Assyria.

In Isaiah 8, Isaiah warned Ahaz that if he relied on an alliance with Assyria instead of on God, God would allow His people to be conquered by Assyria (vv. 4–7, 11–13). In verse 18, Isaiah points to his name and the names of his children as signs pointing to both God’s coming judgment and redemption. Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz (8:3) means “plunder speedily” and Shear-Jashub (7:3) means “a remnant shall return.” Isaiah’s own name means “the Lord is salvation”—pointing to Isaiah’s emphasis that even within judgment, God promised to ultimately bring restoration and healing to His people.

To learn more about the Old Testament book of Isaiah, visit bit.ly/Book_of_Isaiah.

By |2020-06-16T09:15:57-04:00June 20th, 2020|
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