1: “But now thus says the Lord: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” – We are important to God. He repairs what is broken. He calls us His own.
2: “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.” – Our lives are outlined in these verses beginning with our baptism, extending through our life’s rites of passage, and into times of testing and purification by God.
3: “For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” – Everything is possible simply because He is God – our God.
4-5: “Because you are precious in my sight, and honored, and I love you… Do not fear, for I am with you.” – Verses to always remember, especially in times of difficulty, suffering, loneliness, or pain.
7: “Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.” – God created us each with a purpose in mind…to glorify Him and praise Him in everything we do.
Points to Contemplate:
Why did God create you?
This is not a far sweeping question for nations and groups of people…why did He create you, specifically? He has named you His own. Through your baptism He has redeemed you, making you righteous and holy. Through your life experiences He has purified you. You are precious in His sight. He loves you. Why has God gone to so much effort for you? What does He expect in return?
Do you remember your baptism? This is Baptism of the Lord Sunday when we are to consider the importance and significance of our baptisms. Whether you were an infant sprinkled with droplets or an adult immersed in a pool, do you recognize what your baptism has done for you? Do you see how it has set you apart? That in this Holy Sacrament that you have been “called by my name” and have become one with the Holy? Can you lift songs of praise, rejoicing in your baptism and the holiness that comes from it?
What are you to do now? We are entering a new year when it is traditional to reflect on what has transpired in our lives and to resolve what could be. Will you take the time today to reflect on what God has done in your life? Think back at all the events that illustrate His loving presence. Write these down creating a record of your life with God. Now, look ahead. In response to God’s love, to all the things you have just chronicled, what can you do to reflect that love to the world around you? In what ways can you dedicate the days ahead for giving God the glory for which He created you? Promises of the Gospel:
Today’s verses in Isaiah, though written for a people returning from years of exile, destruction, and despair, provide each of us with an outline and description of God’s love. He has created us, redeemed us, purified us, and protected us because we are precious in His sight… honored and loved. We are not to fear anything in life because He is always with us. Remembering our baptism and all that God has done in our lives calls us to fulfill the one purpose that He has created us for… to give God the Glory in all things that we do.