Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Quotation Marks

I don't notice it at first. After all, I have read this scripture a hundred times. I know if off by heart. What new thing could there possibly be for me to learn here? But then I see the quotation marks...

This is the reason I have been attending Bible Study Fellowship for 12 years now- because of the new things I learn when I take the time to really meditate on the Word.

And so I am reading from the early chapters of Matthew when into the scene jumps John the Baptist- that wild, hairy, insect-eating guy whose loud message of repentance somehow drew crowds and crowds of people- people not only wanting to listen to his revolutionary words, but also ready and willing to be dunked under the cold waters of the River Jordan. (I know they are cold...I have been in them).

But the really interesting part is when Matthew quotes from Isaiah as he describes John's ministry:

A voice of one calling in the desert,
"Prepare the way for the Lord,
make straight paths for him."
Matt 3:3
But listen to the way Isaiah says it, and where he places those quotation marks:
A voice of one calling:
"In the desert prepare
the way for the Lord,
make straight in the wilderness
a highway for our God."
Isaiah 40:3
John is not just one who calls in the desert, but is a clear voice to all who find themselves there. 
And I hear the prophetic words of both Isaiah and John the Baptist echo in my mind. I know children who live in the desert. I know those who are out there in the wilderness. But there is always, always hope. Because no matter how dry the desert, no matter how wild the wilderness, we just keep preparing the way...and God will come.

How are you preparing the way for God to come in the life of a child?


  1. Thanks so much for this post. It is good to have a reminder that God is "in" the desert and "in" the wilderness.