As a man I have a tendency to shelter in an inner cave when life gets confusing or uncertain. The lion’s roar becomes a kitty’s whimper. A new year is about to dawn and despite all signs pointing to positive I feel drawn to the dark recesses to lick the wounds of 2020, and shade my eyes from what’s to come.
It’s a mountain my melancholy chooses for vacation several times year. The stay is generally brief, and grossly self-indulgent, but for some strange, unaccountable reason I veer this way with unhealthy regularity.
Not that it will always be this way. My vacate-the-world-and-hide-in-the-cave schedule has diminished significantly over the years.
At one time my name David Lee earned me the nickname, D L Moody, and not because I was likened to the famous old evangelist (would that it were!). Heartfelt, emotional living can be an undulating coaster of a ride without the harness of the Holy Ghost to direct all this creative passion.
Thankfully, the appeal of depression is no longer so seductive as it once was.
Twice we read in Isaiah:
“And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, And come to Zion with singing, With everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness, And sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”Isaiah 35:10 NKJV
And again just a few chapters later:
“So the ransomed of the LORD shall return, And come to Zion with singing, With everlasting joy on their heads. They shall obtain joy and gladness; Sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”Isaiah 51:11 NKJV
Perhaps the Holy Ghost knows we circle the same rocky roads and mountain paths, and understands the need to swing round and remind us that we’re fully ransomed.
Your head bears the garland of gladness and joy, your thoughts no longer play well with harbingers of horror and hopelessness.
You are shaped and shorn for victory. The old tangled coat of fear has been shaved from your back and new garments of praise now flourish around your curves. Jesus cheers your arrival each and every day, and the devil rues the day he suggested you wouldn’t make the grade.
When eyes turn to look on you, they see the reflection of the One who took your place. The shabby rags of sin hang dark with ancient blood. Your past is nailed there too, its once insistent voice silenced.
Sorrow and sighing flee away. They sprout sickly wings and are chased back to the pit from which they came, picked, stuffed, and fed to the devils who spawned them. Satan eats the meal of his own making, and it becomes the fat and gruesome feast of his breaking. Sorrow smothers his plate while the saints rejoice over their enemies, sat with Christ in the victory seat.
What lays before you, this year, is already brightening the horizon. A table laid in the presence of all your enemies, furnished with a buffet of brave. Plates full of peace and pleasure are placed in preparation. Carafes of creativity are spilling over.
Above all, the Host Himself eagerly watches for your arrival. He was please to pay the cost to bring you here, and the banquet reflects the value of each name-placed attendant.
He rises to speak, and the words shoot like lightening to the heart:
“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”John 14:27 NKJV
Peace, the Greek word, eirene, grows from the root word meaning, “to join”. We join Jesus in His perfection. We join Him in His confidence. We join Him as we step into a new year.
Even though the next 365 may not come with a guarantee you can be certain you won’t walk it alone.