“This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.” Isaiah 30:15
This one verse highlights many lessons that I need to learn as I walk with God. The verse is set in a time when the Israelites (people of Judah), (having been saved by God from the Egyptians and consequently given the Promised Land, with laws established around not making alliances with ungodly nations), seek an alliance with Egypt against the invading nation of Assyria. The king is advised to seek reliance on Egypt rather than trusting in God.
God desires that they seek His counsel, protection, and covering. However, they choose to forsake Him. He reminds them that He is Sovereign, that He is Lord, and that He is the Holy One of Israel. How often do we forget that we serve the Sovereign King, the Lord above all Lords, and Holy One that created all the heavens and the earth, and strive to do something in our own strength? I know I do…my faith falters and my trust is immediately put into “Egypt” …a symbol of the world’s provision and security.
God requires that we lean on the Holy Spirit as our teacher and guide and remember that we are protected by Jesus Christ (having conquered all by His blood, shed on the cross). How do we do this? “In repentance and rest is your salvation..”. I know that I often repent for my lack of faith, that part seems “easy” but rest? That word is all to often overlooked and undermined. It is easier to strive in our own wisdom and strength. But it is in rest that our salvation is found. In “quietness and trust” our strength is provided!
Yet, how many times “would we have none of it,” just like the Israelites? If they had quietly rested and waited upon the Lord, He would have given them counsel and fought for them. They would have been protected. However, they did not trust His promises or believe that He would give them the counsel and protection they desired. Like me, I believe they may have lacked the patience to wait, to sit quietly in God’s presence, in His peace and be at rest in the knowledge that He is in control. “Action” is all too often seen as a greater strength than “rest”.
The bible is brimming with verses displaying God’s desire to answer pleas for counsel, desires for wisdom and direction. In Psalm 29:11, King David declared “The Lord will give strength unto his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace.” They just need to rest in Him and allow time for their “souls to find rest in God alone” (Psalm 62:1). My prayer is that whether we are walking in times of peace within our lives, or in times that call for extra faith, we remember to rest in Him. Knowing that resting is an act of confident and secure trust in God. And the best part.. God will wait for us in return, just as He promised to do for the Israelites…
“And therefore will the LORD wait, that He may be gracious unto you, and therefore will He be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD [is] a God of judgment: blessed [are] all they that wait for him.” Isaiah 30:18