“And the LORD will make himself known to the Egyptians, and the Egyptians will know the LORD in that day and worship with sacrifice and offering, and they will make vows to the LORD and perform them. And the LORD will strike Egypt, striking and healing, and they will return to the LORD, and he will listen to their pleas for mercy and heal them…In that day Israel will be the third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, whom the LORD of hosts has blessed, saying, ‘Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my inheritance.’” Isaiah 19:21-24
Our God is big enough and great enough to work in every life and every nation simultaneously. He weaves our lives together in the most fascinating ways, bringing glory to His name and shining light into the darkest places for the encouragement and strengthening of His people. I was reminded of this truth as I read over some of the prophecies written in the book of Isaiah.
The Lord was revealing to him His plans for each nation. God already had the plans in place for what He would bring about. He knew the purposes He was working toward, how He would be glorified, where He would preserve remnants who would worship Him, and when He would draw those people to His heart and heal them.
As we read the progression of each prophecy, it can seem surprising when the words turn from God acting against the nation to Him drawing them to Himself and the people turning to Him again. I guess it goes back to our very limited perspective. We see devastation and corruption and assume there is no hope of redemption. But God can still bring glory to His name. There is still hope for grace.
One verse I love in the midst of these prophecies is Isaiah 18:4, “For thus the LORD said to me: ‘I will quietly look from my dwelling like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.’” It emphasizes to my heart the greatness of this God that we worship, the One who guides our lives. As He quietly looks from His dwelling, He is still in absolute control. That’s how thoroughly and unquestionably sovereign He is. He is able to quietly look from His dwelling and still see that His every purpose is perfectly fulfilled in His precise timing.
All of this is opening my eyes once again in wonder, taking off the blinders that have me focused solely on my life and this little world I see daily. I am reminded of how powerful my God is. He knows His purposes in every nation across this world, and His purposes in each individual life. He knows how He will bring glory to His name in every circumstance. And it is all interwoven in a beautiful tapestry of majesty and grace.