True Thankfulness & Hope

Isaiah was told to name his two sons:

“Speed the Spoil; Hasten the Booty”
“A Remnant Shall Return”
Isaiah 7-12

What odd names for boys….  Isaiah standing there with his sons is an image to help us remember two spiritual principles.  This snapshot of Isaiah standing between his two sons is meant for our encouragement.  Seven Hundred Forty or so years before the birth of Jesus Christ is a long time for an encouraging message to be around!  It is so easy to remember(if you can just recall the names).   Your language or culture doesn’t matter.  Your schedule or busyness won’t interfere.  You can even remember it and think about it as you look after a toddler, care for the aged, run for Vice President, or prepare a Thanksgiving turkey or pie. And it is especially easy to click to this image when a relative starts in on you again this year!

Speed the spoil…Let it come!   Trouble.  In this case, a predicted invasion by the Assyrian Empire.   No one can react like this to trouble without spending some  time alone with God.   “Let it come” is based on God’s sovereignty.  Our compassionate and loving God, who is also the God of all justice, controls world events and everything affecting us. Not only is the President and the President-Elect in His hands, but that relative who drives you crazy or your pastor.   Your church may seem weak and insignificant, overcome by worldliness and strife.  Let it come!  The Lord God of Creation has not deserted His children or stopped running things.

“A remnant shall return.”  Some will always return to God!  That is the second principle.  Your sister-in-law or husband may suddenly turn to our Lord Jesus Christ in true repentance and faith.  With a whole new attitude toward you. The President might proclaim His reliance on the Lord Jesus, urging the nation to turn back to God.  Who knows what could happen, but some will always turn from their sin to God.  It might be us….You or I might become more kind, gentle, or self-controlled. Salvation is from God.  That is the bottom line of God’s sovereignty, His being God.  The Holy Spirit still works in our hearts. Some will always return.

These vivid images from the Old Testament are for our rebuke and encouragement. These truths are the foundations for our hope and thankfulness.

“I am thankful God has not deserted us this year!”
“I’m glad God is still running the show.”
“I’m thankful for the preservation of Isaiah’s sermons.”
“I’m thankful for the Pilgrims and Puritans who started this nation on a thankful course.”
“I’m thankful for our family.”
“I’m glad God is not through with any of us yet.”
“I’m so glad my eyes were opened and I finally understood that my sins are forgiven, forgotten, blotted out.”

True hope and thankfulness come back when we think on these teachings of the Bible. They are there, through the ages,  for our comfort and encouragement and strength.  Isaiah has a message for the church today.

Be strong in the Lord.  Lay a strong foundation for thankfulness and hope. Train yourself to think on truths like this Isaiah snapshot.  Truths written and preserved for the good of all Christians.

About Carol Brandt

I earned a B.A. in History from Florida State University and M.Ed in.Higher Education from Florida Atlantic University. I taught high school social studies before "retiring" to full-time homemaking and raising two daughters. Now I love being a grandmother to four boys and a girl. I have also raised five collies. My husband, John, was an optometrist, who worked tirelessly for his profession through private practice and as a consultant, and served on the Board of Trustees of Illinois College of Optometry for twenty years. Ernest Reisinger was my chief mentor in this warm-hearted application of Calvinism. He gave me many books! The Founders Journal and Founders Conferences, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, and Charles Spurgeon have been other sources of Reformed thinking as well as the other warm-hearted ones listed in my book, "Warm-hearted Calvinists."

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