- 55:1 Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. If I’m thirsty, come! If I have a desire for God, come! It’s freely offered! I don’t have to earn to receive. I don't have to earn up points to have an encounter with God's love! It’s wine and milk—joy and substinance—at anytime, as much as I want, whenever I want! If I have a desire, come! God is generous, God isn’t in it for what he gets from us. He gives away freely because that is who he is. He is love. Love serves. He gives and gives to me. It’s all there for the taking! It’s all mine. Take it and enjoy it! If you are thirsty.
- 55:2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. Have I lost my appetite by indulging on things that do not satisfy? Why spend my money, my time on what does not satisfy? My soul craves pleasure! It demands to be satisfied. And I can drink and eat that which numbs the craving or I can drink and eat what truly satisfies! One leads to life, one to brokenness! So, eat what is good! Spend your time dwelling on the things that bring life! Spend time on God, dwell in his presence, let his love satisfy you! And the outcome will be delight! Your soul will be feeding on the richest thing the universe can offer—the presence of God!
- 55:3 Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David. God pleads with me! Hear me that your soul may live! The world offers temporary pleasure, the world cannot satisfy the deep longing in my heart! God has made an everlasting covenant through Jesus with us! The same faithful love that God promised to David! David was an example of the relationship that we get to have with God! Holy Spirit will come dwell inside of us—he will give us unlimited wine and milk. He will give my soul the richest of fare! God will bind us to himself for all of eternity! It’s simply the best deal in the entire universe!
- 55:4–5 See, I have made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander of the peoples, surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations that do not know you will hasten to you, because of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendor. David was a witness to all the coming generations. His authority is available to us! Because we know God and we carry his splendor, the world will be attracted to us! Yet we must not begin to eat it’s riches or we will stop feasting on the very thing that drew the world to us in the first place! God in us gives us beauty and authority and power! God in us satisfies our souls! David’s life is a prophetic example of the kind of authority we are to walk in. We are to take the mountain tops! We are to rule with integrity and servant leadership. We are to remain in power by continually feasting on God. Do not trade his banqueting table for the pleasure the world will try and offer you! They will try to entice you away from your first love. But do not forget the first commandment! Love the LORD your God will all your heart, soul, mind and strength! With all my heart: emotions, desires and as I set my will to love him over time my heart will follow. With all my soul: my speech; no complaining which is pride when we believe we deserve a better deal! With all my mind: with everything I meditate on, what do I spend time thinking about and reading; read my bible! With all my strength: creativity, money, fasting, leadership, influence. If I submit my strength he gives me way more buying power than trying always with 100% strength.
- 55:6 Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. This is the age when we get to seek the LORD! He can be found, he is near! Spend your life, this life, this human age seeking the LORD! He is near to us now! He is able to be found. This is pretty incredible revelation, no?! The creator of the universe can be found and experienced by man, by me! Right now, in my bedroom. Great deal!
- 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God for he will freely pardon. This is unreal! Let the wicked stop their evil deeds. Let us control our thoughts. Let us turn to God against whom we’ve sinned. Let us turn to the one against whom we have rebelled and he will have mercy on us! God will freely grant our pardon! What an age of mercy! Since the flood God has been so generous with mankind! He made a covenant never to destroy the earth! He gives mercy and is full of long suffering. He sent his only son to die in our place! This God we serve is good! All the time, every moment, full of blessing, full of life! I want to know this God! There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus. Search his heart—nothing in him wants to condemn us—he only wants to save us, to set us free, to serve us, to love us and give us pleasure by inviting us to follow God and obey him wholeheartedly! This is good news!
- 55:8–9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. I can see very simply. God alone is wise and all knowing! Just as the heavens are a higher place full of earthly impossibilities, so God’s thinking is higher than man’s. Oh!! To trust God and live in peace! His heart is full of desire to bless me! His heart is full of desire and ability to guide me and give me life and life abundant. Place my trust in his hands by freeing myself from anxiety, from worry! There is a testimony to the world! How do I live in peace? How do I live unconcerned for my own affairs, my belongings?! They are in the LORD’s hands! Place all my concerns and cares in his hands. For he cares for me! OHH!!! That I may grasp this revelation with my whole being at all times! Put my worries and cares on his shoulders! God is all powerful and promises me good things—my greatest act of trust is to live worry free, full of peace—my testimony to the world about Jesus is that I live without concern to what I will eat or drink or where I will lay my head! All my problems I cast upon the LORD for he promises to take care of me! That peace allows me to love with abandon. That peace frees my to give without care. That peace allows me to be generous because I am not looking out for my own interest. God is looking out for my interests, he is looking out for my destiny. Let me grasp that!!!!
- 55:10–11 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth; It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Just like rain comes down on the earth and it accomplishes its task of watering the earth (impossible for it not to, water will water the earth), and from that blessing flows, crops grow and the bread is made, God’s word comes down from heaven and waters the souls of men. It’s impossible for it not to, God’s word always waters man’s soul and from it blessing flows. His word accomplishes its task. Water always accomplishes its task and so does God’s word. God sends his word with a desire and purpose, just like water works under the surface, behind the scenes. God’s word works in men’s hearts and brings life and transformation which enables him to become God’s handiwork to accomplish the task on earth which the LORD wants to see. God is always working. God knows how to make things grow. And his word works on every seed that is in the ground. It is our job to be in the soil, ready to receive his word. But the LORD causes us to grow and become a blessing. We just need to drink and receive what he is pouring out!
- 55:12 You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands. How about this! This is the testimony of a man’s life who drinks from the LORD! You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace! Having drunk the water of God—to those who are thirsty! Having sent his rain, it lands on man’s heart and the results? You will go out in joy! We will eat and drink the finest fare! We will be led forth in peace because God’s thoughts are not our own. The trials of life will burst into song—they will become your testimonies of overcoming! The trees of the fields will clap their hands—the nations, men with influence and power will applaud you as your overcome obstacles that they pondered for decades! They will seek your power, knowledge and friendship. Where do you get your wisdom? Where do you get your joy? Where do you get your peace?! Come all who are thirsty! Drink freely! The gospel is good news! God is a good god! He pardon’s freely! He satisfies our soul. He makes us overcomers.
- 55:13 Instead of the thornbush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow. This will be for the LORD’s renown, for an everlasting sign, which will not be destroyed. God turns all things for the good of those who love him. The thornbushes become pine trees, briers become myrtles! The story that people will tell of the LORD? The everlasting sign that testifies of his character? God takes a rebellious people, gives them unlimited, soul-satisfying love, calls them to cast all their cares and concerns on him, live in joy and peace and overcome every obstacle and see it turned for their good! Unbelievable!!!!!!
This is how I felt by the end of my meditation on Isaiah 55! haha. My notes are below, maybe just use them as a spark of inspiration to do your own meditation on the chapter. It was mind-blowing!!!
I'd like to invite you over for dessert!
I'd enjoy the chance to catch up with you and hear what's going on in your life.
I certainly have a few stories! And imagine you have a few questions to make all that I do more clear.
When: Wednesday, August 27, 2014 7:00–9:00PM
Where: 2111 N. Cherry Hill Dr. Arlington Heights, IL 60004
Personal invitations to follow (but all are welcome!)
3 things I took away from the 3 weeks in California:
Here's a shot from Day 2—email me your pictures and I can post them tomorrow! firstname.lastname@example.org
We were impacted by today's prayer points on wealth and realized repentance isn't just a prayer—it takes real action. We all committed to be cheerful givers who go beyond 10% and allow God to take control of 100% of our finances!
"I, George Washington, President of the United States, do recommend to all religious societies and denominations, and to all persons whomsoever, within the United States, to set apart and observe Thursday, the 19th day of February next, as a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, and on that day to meet together and render sincere and hearty thanks to the great Ruler of nations for the manifold and signal mercies which distinguish our lot as a nation...."
Our founding fathers turned to God when they noticed God was disciplining them. And now, Anne Lotz, Billy Graham's daughter, is calling us to do the same. From July 1–July 7 (Tuesday–Monday) she is asking us to recognize God's authority in our lives and in our nation and start following his ways so he can continue to bless our nation as he has since our beginning.
I believe it matters that I pray—and that you join in as well. God knows you! And the conversations that you have with him matters! They shape the future of our nation.
You can sign up for daily prayer points here.
Also listen to IHOP's, Allen Hood talk about why and how they're joining in.
Come on! Doesn't this get your heart pumping!! Brian Barcelona is a good friend to Fire & Fragrance, a young guy in his 20's working in the high schools of LA. He carries the heartbeat of Fire & Fragrance and believes his simple obedience—showing up when God asks him to—will change our nation's history!
I know we're going to see movements like this spreading all over America in the next 5 years. God is gearing up! That's why I'm pumped!! to be working in YWAM Discipleship Training Schools—equipping young people to get out there and accomplish the dream's God is putting in their hearts to see revival in the nations!
Our last two months in India were a huge success! We found young people, with great hunger to know God in a more dynamic and genuine way. And can I boast in my team mates for a moment? Full of energy, vision, creativity, song writing and servant-hearted love, they poured themselves out so that the people we met could encounter God!
Most of our energies were focused on training young adults. We taught them how to hear God's voice, share the gospel, break free from shame, fear and passivity and how to practically live out the 1st and 2nd commandments. We saw our worship times explode with shouting and dancing! We saw friend connect in deep spiritual ways and so many paradigms about rigid, lifeless Christianity shattered!
When we weren't training, we hit the streets to build friendships and share God's love with our neighborhoods. We worked in rehab clinics, visited hospitals and helped with medical ministry in slums.
All 10 of us are returning home with more hope in our hearts that Jesus really is the good news that can change lives and transform nations! My students left no fear unconfronted! They fearlessly become ministers of God's love and power, able to preach in front of a crowd, minister to the homeless and lead a room into an encounter with God. I was so impressed!
Thank you for investing in my work with Fire & Fragrance. You've impacted hundreds of lives in India and are sending a group of Americans back home with a fire in their heart and a confidence that they are the light of the world!
About a year ago my friend, Seth Yates, gave a message to my DTS about the power music has to influence us. I was radically challenged and convicted. How many times had I gone to music to dwell on my broken heart? Seth challenged me to be like King David, who was honest about his pain, but always remembered God's faithfulness—he didn't wallow in self pity.
So I've been on a hunt ever since to find music written by people with the heart of King David. I've erased all my music that exalted the pursuit of pleasure and exalted the power and satisfaction of money, romance or self-pity.
So here are two songs I've been listening that come from hearts that are searching for Jesus and reality as he defines it.