“Oh, Lord, you are my God.” Isaiah knelt down and bowed his head as he prayed. He was alone. The light of the sun was fading into the west, but the light of his God shone brightly in his heart. “I will extol and praise your name. You have fulfilled your wonderful plans.”
Isaiah stood up slowly and looked into the distance where he could see the silhouette of an old city. “You have made the city a heap, the fortified city is no more. The castle of the insolent is a city no more.”
Isaiah straightened his shoulders with a deep breath as he put his fist against his chest. “A strong people will honor you, fierce nations will fear you. You are a refuge to the poor, a refuge to the needy in distress.” Isaiah raised both hands toward the sky. “You are shelter from the rain, shade from the heat.” Then he pointed his hands toward the ground, stomped one foot and declared, “On this mountain the Lord of Hosts will provide for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines.”
Isaiah softened his voice to a whisper. “On this mountain he will destroy death forever. The Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces.” Then he smiled and shouted, as if he were preaching to a multitude, “The reproach of his people he will remove from the whole Earth; for the Lord has spoken.”
Isaiah pointed toward the fading orb that was the setting sun. “On that day it will be said, ‘Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us!’” He knelt down and touched the ground with the palms of his hands. “The hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain, but Moab will be trodden down as a straw is trodden down in the mire.” Isaiah leaned back on his knees and extended his hands forward, “The Lord will stretch forth his hands as a swimmer extends his hands to swim.”
Isaiah picked up a handful of dust and rubbed it with his fingers. “The high-walled fortress he will raze, and strike it down level with the earth, with the very dust.”
Isaiah wiped the dust off of his hands and stood up.
“On that day they will sing a song, on that day they will call upon your name. On that day!”
READ MORE ABOUT IT:
1. What is one thing Isaiah said about God in his prayer?
2. What did Isaiah say God would do with death?
We think we are having a bad day if we miss the school bus, or if the family car won’t start. Most of the people we read about in the Bible had to walk everywhere they went, and most of the roads they traveled were dusty paths that turned to mud when it rained. There weren’t any road signs or distance markers, and there was no shelter from the sun on hot days.
The most common type of footwear was the sandal, which had a sole made of either wood or leather held together by leather straps. Some families used donkeys, horses or camels for long journeys, but these animals were expensive to feed and care for.
The next time you read that the Israelites wandered in the desert, or that Jesus went on a long journey with his disciples, you’ll know they didn’t take a taxi.
Anne Frances Boscardin was born into a poor Italian family in the late 1800s and was called Annetta. A local priest believed she had a spirituality that should be developed. He recommended her to a convent. That convent turned Annetta down, but when she was 16, she joined the Sisters of St. Dorothy and was given the name Bertilla. She spent many hours laboring in the kitchen.
Eventually Bertilla was transferred to a hospital to be trained as a nurse. Her duties involved ministering to ill children, and Bertilla knew her true calling was to give aid to sick people.
During World War I, the hospital was used to care for injured Italian soldiers. Even when night air raids dropped bombs near the hospital, Bertilla brought coffee and medicine to the soldiers.
After she died in 1922 from a serious illness, crowds visited her grave where miracles were attributed to her. We remember her on Oct. 20.