“…You will forget the shame of your youth” Isaiah 54:4c
A historical wonder of my country Sri Lanka is the complex rock fortress Sigiriya and the palace built on it by one of our former Kings, Kasyapa, in the 5th century. Tourists flock there to view its beauty, grandeur and craftsmanship. One of highlights of Sigiriya is the frescoes that are painted on its rock walls. Many years ago, some of these frescoes were vandalized by an unknown group of people, with either ink or paint being thrown to deface them. As a result, many experts had to be brought in to restore these frescoes back to their original state. Thankfully, they succeeded in the restoration efforts.
Isaiah 54 speaks about God’s restoration to a barren, widowed lady (symbolic of the nation of Israel), who had possibly been rejected by her husband (vs 6). In that time and culture, being barren, widowed and rejected, marked her for humiliation and shame. It made her extremely vulnerable. God however speaks restoration into her shame and disgrace as Isaiah 54:4 says, “Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood”. In verse 17, God says, ‘you will refute every tongue that accuses you…”.
Friend, are you carrying any shame or reproach from your past? May be from your youth? Is it about failure as a parent or as a spouse or in some other area of your life? Does the recent past bring up memories of being humiliated and disgraced? Be encouraged because our God has the amazing ability to restore us from our shame and failures when we turn to Him with our whole heart!
ILLUSTRATION – I have always loved music and singing. (This I believe led me into a career in Radio Broadcasting later on.) When Jesus gloriously saved me, one of the first things I wanted to do therefore was to join the church choir. Unfortunately, I didn’t know that I couldn’t sing too well!! When I joined the choir, I was singing off pitch and therefore disorienting the rest of the group! As a result, it seemed like I would have to step down from the choir. This would have been a severe setback and caused much shame for me as a young boy. However, thanks to my Choir Director, 3 members of the choir and most of all, God’s help, I managed to overcome this problem. I later became a worship Leader in my church and even sang harmony!! Over the past 8 years, I have been involved in many ministry areas, but the one that I have served most closely in is…..like to take a guess? It’s worship!!!
God delights to restore us from our shame. Will you allow Him to do so?
“No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame...” Psalm 25:3
Prayer – Lord, I ask you today to be the Lord over every area of my life and to restore me from all shame and disgrace. I ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen!
By Palitha Jayasooriya
Used by permission
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