Friday, April 8 – Lent 2022

Isaiah 43:16-21

Author: Tracey Lynn

Reflection: v.19, ‘I will make a way in the wilderness, and waters in the desert’

It was the end of the day. The end of a long day that began at 4:20 a.m. As I drove to pick up my daughter, I wondered what to make her for dinner. She got in the car and almost as if she read my mind she said, ‘Can we have Waffle House for dinner?’ In my exhaustion I was delighted at her suggestion because I knew I still needed to study and do some laundry in addition to making dinner happen. When I arrived at the Waffle House, I was greeted by a warm and lovely waitress. As I was placing our order to-go she politely paused for a moment and reached for her phone.

She said, ‘This is my song!’ while she turned up the volume on the speaker she brought from home and began singing along with Al Green, ‘For the Good Times.’ She continued to sing and sway to the music all while she rang up my order and dried the silverware. As I waited for the food, the cook, the waitress and I swayed gently and sang quietly with Al Green. In that unsuspecting, unexpected moment at the Waffle House, refreshment was offered and shared in the midst of the everyday-ness and the feeling of exhaustion.

In this scripture, Isaiah is addressing the Israelites who have been held captive and separated from their community at the hands of the Babylonians. He is attempting to offer them hope in the promises of God amid their suffering—which can often feel like a lonely wilderness or a dry desert. We can read Isaiah and know intellectually that God is where we find hope, but often it’s difficult to translate that to our everyday lives. I know I certainly struggle sometimes to see and understand what God’s hope looks like when things seem hard, especially when circumstances seem to remain unchanged. But it’s amid those circumstances when we pause, pay attention, and sway to the music of the unexpected rivers that appear before us in our deserts, that we will catch a glimpse of the hope in God that Isaiah perceives.

Prayer God, who provides waffles in the wilderness, care for our needs and give us rest and refreshment.

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