“I will give you back what you lost
in the years when swarms of locusts ate your crops.
It was I who sent this army against you.
Now you will have plenty to eat, and be satisfied.
You will praise the Lord your God,
who has done wonderful things for you.
My people will never be despised again” (Joel 25, 26; Good News Bible)
One of the easiest ways to grieve the Holy Spirit is to take God’s promises for granted. God is not a man. God is not my ‘neighbor’. Even in His wonderful humility as the Son of Man, Jesus is God in heaven. I should never forget that! All His promises are ‘yes and amen’! I TRUST THE WORD OF GOD!
God is the only One who can satisfy my soul after losing so many opportunities in the past. The truth is that I cannot blame God for my present situation. The ‘sin factor’ is the hidden source of all deception and pride. If I obeyed God all the time all these years, today I could have been much better. Who knows, I could have been a graduate; I could have had my own house; I could have been married with children; I could have been in fulltime ministry…the list of possible ‘if’ is endless… But the truth is that I wasted much time, resources and opportunities where God could have blessed me more than I can imagine. Thinking of it, I feel ashamed… and sad…
So what do I do now?
I still have to come back to the God I disappointed thru my past rebellion. For there is no other being who can restore what I have lost all these years. If I refuse to come back to God I will be a life time slave to bitterness and regret. Old age shall be a terror and a painful reminder of the sins of my youth. I know many people like that…
So I come back to the God who promised restoration after total loss and failure. The word ‘restore’ in Hebrew is similar with ‘Shalom’. It is one of the greatest words in the Bible. It is also one of the names of God. It means the best God has for you; the fulfillment of your greatest desires and dreams, the answer to your best prayers. Specifically it means blessings, prosperity, health, friends, peace, joy and favor. God promises to give you His Shalom to replace your sorrow, mistakes and failures. God allowed pain to come to you, to humble you. This promised restoration comes after many ‘years’ (plural) of shameful losses and painful disappointments in life. This restoration is always miraculous. No man can take the glory for your sudden prosperity. God alone does ‘wonderful things’. The shame of the past will be totally removed and replaced with sincere praises to God, who alone is worthy to receive all the glory! I believe!
Today chose who you want to serve: the idol of self or Jehovah Shalom?
In Christ I declare:
‘As for me and my household, we shall serve the Lord!’
Jehovah Shalom shall restore all my losses!
For His glory!
In Jesus name