Friday, August 8, 2008

A New Threshing Instrument

Today I am praying with Isaiah 41: 15, 16. "Behold, I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: thou shalt thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and shalt make the hills as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in the Lord, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel."

I love any passage that begins with the word 'behold'. The dictionary says that word is used in the imperative to call attention. So we are to pay particular attention to what follows. Jesus uses it often in his teachings.

Threshing is th process of separating the grain from the straw. This might be done on a threshing floor designed for the purpose out under the open sky on a hill. First the sheaves were loosened upon the ground and oxen driven in a circle over it. Then when the wind blew, the threshed grain was tossed high in the air with a pitch fork, the threshing instrument, and the chaff was blown away. The clean grain fell to the floor to be harvested.

I look to Isaiah's words for two types of inspiration. One way to work with them is to see that divine love will provide a new 'threshing instrument' to help me separate the tares and the wheat in my experience. Some problem has not yielded to my initial prayers and it is time to take a fresh look at what needs to change in my thought.

A second way to see this, in connection with my work as a practitioner praying for others, is to see that God will make 'me' that instrument. I will get just the inspiration I need to see that unreality of the lie about God and His perfect creation.

Either way the result will be that, with the ideas God provides, at all times and under all circumstances the problem can and will be healed. Some things seem to loom over us like mountains; immovable objects, something just to big for us to climb over or around or through, Goliath-like adversities. Despite their claims to be permanent or unchanging, these can be reduced to a less frightening picture and then even hill-sized problems can be carried away. It might take a simple breeze to do it, or it might require the strength of a whirlwind, but it has no substance of its own and cannot resist being removed.

And when this happens, we must see and understand that it would not have happened on its own, it was divine Truth making us free. We can rejoice in the disappearance of the problem, but even more in having learned something about God's loving care and protection. More about our place in His affections. A clearer glimpse of the right to peace, health and supply.

Thanks, Isaiah.

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