A Stump of Hope | Day 5

In the early chapters of Isaiah hope seems lost. Israel is falling deeper into disobedience and inching closer to a place of no return. Their hearts are hardened to the LORD’s ways and they sink more each day towards the ocean floor. Were all things lost for the people of Israel? Was this their new normal?

In this setting, Isaiah is commissioned to take a stand of faith and trust in the LORD – to declare with authority that the LORD is a sovereign, righteous judge who has set the nation of Israel apart to be a witness of His glory throughout the earth. Yet the picture Isaiah paints is foreboding. Isaiah receives a vision that depicts Israel being chopped down like a tree and left like a stump in a field. If that wasn’t grim enough, Isaiah goes on to share that this stump will also be burned with fire until all that is left is ashes.

Are there circumstances in your life that have left you feeling hardened and broken?

What seemed like a neglected garden decimated to ashes held within a promise. After the burning and purification by fire, out of the smoldering stump is a Holy Seed, a future sign of hope. The LORD will be faithful to the promises He made to David – He is going to send a new King to arise from an old stump and set His people free.

“For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of parched ground; He had no stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.”

- Isaiah 53:2 NASB

This King will be empowered by the LORD’s spirit to rule and reign over a New Jerusalem and transform the world with justice and wisdom.

“A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit…In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally Him, and His resting place will be glorious.”

- Isaiah 11:1, 10 NIV

All was not lost for Israel. Where there was only a heap of ashes and a rotting stump, emerged salvation through the coming Messiah. The faithfulness of the LORD to Israel compels us to hope in His promises.

Let us align our hearts with Messiah – to believe that out of ashes, a great and eternal hope can arise out of every single life circumstance.

Pray for the LORD to strengthen your resolve to choose hope. When all we may see is a deserted garden, the LORD promises to make something new, to heal and be a refuge for all.

The LORD has done and will continue to do great things out of a stump!

Reflection:

Are there areas in your life that are dry and need reviving? Invite the LORD today to deliver on His promise to touch that very place with His Spirit and power.

Share this article