Go with God

December 18, 2021 | Misty Soderstrom

About the author: Misty and Stan moved to Indianapolis in the fall of 1997 with their children Kelsey and David, and started attending ZPC a few months later. Misty enjoys painting and creating sets for the Worship Arts Team and VBS, she also sings in the choir, and coordinated the ZPC Inquires Class for about 9 years until she recently handed it off to the Deacon team. Stan and Misty have been married for 38 years and love spoiling their Jack Russell Terrier mix, Dory. They have fun traveling together and hosting dinners for friends and family.

Today's scripture: Isaiah 62:6-12

When I was asked to write an Advent Devotional my first thought was, I want to encourage everyone to rest. I don’t want to add to anyone’s to-do list or cause any stress, because, personally, I am tired. I’m worn out from a sinus infection and issues with my knees. My mental load feels heavy with the pandemic, destructive weird weather, unrest/atrocities in various parts of the world, and the general fracture/disunion in our country. Aren’t I a Debbie Downer? My mindset was that we need to rest in God, because we are not in control of much of anything, but he is. Then, I received my assigned scripture reading, Isaiah 62:6-12.

Verses 6-7 start, “I have posted watchmen on your walls, Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth.” No one is resting in those two verses – neither the watchmen nor God. When I read scripture, I try to apply it by asking where I am in the verse. What role does God have for me in what I am reading? I’m not trying to be narcissistic; I simply want to understand it on a personal level. If God is asking me to be a watchman, what does it mean to give him no rest? To me it means that I am to pray without ceasing, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). God wants us to rely on him and ask for his will to be done in the world and in our lives. Side note on prayer - in the picture above, I’m standing with my husband inside the San Andreas Fault, and I was very much aware of the possibility that the world could start shaking at any moment – I was silently praying without ceasing while we were in that fault, although my uneasiness doesn’t show up in my expression. 

Verses 8-9 are about God’s promises to his people. They will be blessed by the fruits of their labor and their enemies will no longer be able to steal their harvest and take advantage of them.  So everyone is still working hard to benefit from their harvest. In verse 10, God asks his people to pass through the gates and, “Prepare the way for the people. Build up, build up the highway! Remove the stones. Raise a banner for the nations.” This is infrastructure week – the people are creating a clear path to the city of God, just as we should do with our lives every day. We should not be a stumbling block (with words or actions) that could keep anyone from believing in Christ. 

Verses 10-12 provide the reward for all that hard work and unceasing prayer, “The Lord has made proclamation to the ends of the earth: "Say to Daughter Zion, ‘See, your Savior comes! See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him.’” They will be called the Holy People, the Redeemed of the Lord; and you will be called Sought After, the City No Longer Deserted.” The wait is over, and our Redeemer has come to dwell with us!  This is the true meaning of Christmas, Christ is with us, and we are his. We can rest in the assurance of our salvation. 


Go with God. In other words, keep God’s presence top of mind as much as possible with a continual inner dialogue of prayer. Praise his creation as you look at the world around you. Bring your thoughts, concerns, and daily routine before him and ask for his guidance and intervention in both the big and the small things. If someone crosses your path, lift them up in prayer. If you start worrying about the state of the world/country, tell God about it. Check in with him before you pick up the phone or start to write an email/text/post. Ask for his protection as you drive, walk, or go about your day. Thank him for his loving, merciful, grace.


Dear Lord God Almighty,
Thank you for inviting us into relationship with you (Father, Spirit, Son). Thank you for seeking us out and saving us.  Help us to reflect your loving heart to this weary world.  Help us to build for your Kingdom so we would be part of your eternal plan to draw people from every nation to Jesus. Bless us with a continual awareness of your presence in our lives.  May your Kingdom come and your will be done in us and through us.
We pray this in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ, your son.