This Sunday, I’m going to preach on the story of Daniel’s three friends and their time in the fiery furnace (Daniel 3). Every time I hear that story, I am reminded of God’s comforting words in Isaiah 43.1-4:
But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you.
O Israel, the one who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have
ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.
When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.
When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown.
When you walk through the fire of oppression,
you will not be burned
up; the flames will not consume you.
For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
I gave Egypt as a ransom for your freedom; I gave Ethiopia and Seba in
Others were given in exchange for you.
I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me.
You are honored, and I love you.
Okay, now go back and read those words again. Ask yourself:
- Are there deep waters through which I am going?
- Are there rivers of difficulty that I fear may cause me to drown?
- Is there an oppressive fire that I fear will consume me?
Then read those last few words again: “you are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you”.
Even if you are in the midst of a trial right now, claim that promise from the Lord: you are precious; you are honoured, and God loves you. You may not understand what you experience in these days, but there is a divine purpose that will work for your good, and for God’s glory.
Whatever you face in these days, know that you are honoured and loved by the One who made you.