28/7/11 Isaiah 53-56, 2 Peter 2
S: Isaiah 54:1,5 Sing, O barren woman, you who have never given birth! Break into loud and joyful song, O Jerusalem, you who have never been in labour. For the desolate woman now has more children than the woman who lives with her husband,” says the LORD. ... For your Creator will be your husband; the LORD of Heaven’s Armies is his name! He is your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, the God of all the earth.
O: In the ancient world, a barren woman was considered a disgrace, cursed by God. This passage was specifically referring to Israel, I think, but also can apply in the modern context to a person like my dear friend Annette Arulrajah. She is a truly inspirational person.
She's probably in her late 40s or early 50s by now, and she had never married, but she has served the Lord faithfully many years. She was on staff with the Fellowship of Evangelical Students in Malaysia, ending as the general secretary. She's recently moved on to the international parent body IFES. She's influenced countless thousands of students to follow Jesus, and is today in Poland with the IFES World Assembly. Recently, she braved the tear gas and acid water canons to fight for democracy in Malaysia. Dr. Loh Kim Cheng is another similar lady and there are many others.
They have no physical children... but their spiritual children are myriad.
A: I am married to a lovely wife and have 2 beautiful children. But God calls all of us -- married or single -- who follow Him to make disciples of all nations.
I'm not a very good evangelist, but one of my greatest pleasures is to have an old friend find me on the net after many years and say, "Hey, remember when you used to share the Gospel with me years ago? Guess what? I'm a believer now."
Let us keep on being fishers of men! Let us keep on encouraging one another to love and good deeds!
P: Father, thank You for Your great salvation. I pray that I will be like the barren woman with many children, in addition to my physical children. In Jesus' name, amen.