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Monday, May 15, 2017

Forever Flowers

As we start this 3rd New Week in the Month of May lets take a moment to reflect on the Goodness of God with these words of wisdom Read: Isaiah 40:1–8 Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 22–23; John 4:31–54 The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.—Isaiah 40:8 As a toddler, my son Xavier enjoyed giving me flowers. I appreciated every freshly picked weed or store-bought blossom he purchased with his dad. I treasured each gift until it wilted and had to be thrown away. One day, Xavier gave me a beautiful bouquet of artificial flowers. He grinned as he arranged the silk white calla lily, yellow sunflower, and purple hydrangea in a glass vase. “Look, Mommy,” he said. “They’ll last forever. That’s how much I love you.” Since then, my boy has grown into a young man. Those silk petals have frayed. The colors have faded. Still, the Forever Flowers remind me of his adoration. And there is something else it brings to mind—one thing that truly stands forever—the limitless and lasting love of God, as revealed in His infallible and enduring Word (Isa. 40:8). As the Israelites faced continual trials, Isaiah comforted them with confidence in God’s enduring words (40:1). He proclaimed that God paid the debt caused by the Israelites’ sin (v. 2), securing their hope in the coming Messiah (vv. 3-5). They trusted the prophet because his focus remained on God rather than their circumstances. In a world filled with uncertainties and affliction, the opinions of man and even our own feelings are ever-shifting and as limited as our mortality (vv. 6-7). Still, we can trust God’s unchanging love and character as revealed through His constant and eternally true Word. —Xochitl Dixon God affirms His love through His dependable and unchanging Word, which endures now and forevermore. INSIGHT: The Bible has changed lives in each generation that has read it. The apostle Paul told us, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). This means that the inspired words did not come merely from human authors but from the Holy Spirit of God who guided what they wrote. As Peter told us, “Prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21). The word that translates as our English phrase “carried along” actually refers to the wind blowing along a sailing ship. Scripture could not have been written without the gracious guidance of a Divine Author, the Holy Spirit. How does knowing that all Scripture is inspired by God—who does not change—comfort you? Dennis Fisher

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