You know that Sunday feeling, right?

We leave church inspired by and filled with  Truth, encouragement and passion on Sundays … and somewhere along the course of the day and week, we often lose that Sunday feeling. 

The Monday After {the Sunday Sermon} is our attempt to carry the Sunday message into Monday mornings by walking together and sharing how what we’ve heard on Sunday morning is making a difference in our Mondays, our weeks, our lives. Each Monday, a voice from the pews will give personal perspective to the words we soaked in on Sunday. Because of your generosity, lives are being changed by God’s grace, and we’re able to share these stories with you here!

The Monday After Sunday, March 24, 2013: The Suffering Servant

By Anita Everly

Oppressed.  Afflicted.  Judged.  Cut off.  Stricken.  Suffering.

These are the words used to describe Jesus, our Savior.  Perhaps any of these words from the text of Isaiah 53: 7-9 could describe you right now.  If not, undoubtedly your season in the midst of such circumstances has happened or will soon.

And in the midst of these verses, something struck me: in these three short verses, Isaiah mentioned four times that Jesus was silent.

Silent.

He didn’t defend himself, argue, plead or justify.   He was silent.

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Moreover, he endured.  He accepted, tolerated and lived through the pain of every offense thrown at him.  Both of these reactions go against our culture’s way of reacting and are often hard to understand.

However, in 1 Peter 2:23 we find this:

“When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats.  Instead, He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly.”

Jesus entrusted himself to God.  He knew God had a plan for all of it and endured precisely because of that!

In our common terms, terms I believe are biblically sound, Jesus knew:  God’s got this!

What about when we’re in a winter of life?  Do we choose to endure knowing God’s got this and He has a plan?  And somehow, out of some of life’s worst heartaches and circumstances, He works all things for our good?

If Christ Himself did nothing wrong yet endured death on a cross for me, He understands.  Surely I can trust God with the dark valleys of my life.  But it takes just that, releasing ourselves into the Hands of the One who can heal.  When we’re in a valley, it may be the last thing we feel like doing, but it’s the answer to us experiencing Him exchanging our ashes for His beauty.

Jeremiah 29:13 says,

“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  I will be found by you,” declares the Lord.

This is a rock solid promise that when we seek Him, we will find Him.  He meets us where we are–and with suffering experience.

But as Pastor Joe, said, we have to stop and ponder the things of God.

We cannot fill ourselves with the mess of this world if we expect to be filled with Him.  We have to open His Word, pray without ceasing and be still before him, reflecting and listening.  Those things take intention and time.  The guidance, hope and healing are there, but we have to engage during the enduring.

There is probably no better week than Holy Week to lay it all down at His feet and be silent before Him, entrusting our circumstances and lives to Him, not just the difficult, but all the good, too.  He’s got it all, and we can entrust ourselves to Him in faith that He purposes His plan in us.

What are we willing to sacrifice this week to spend time seeking Him with all our heart?

He’ll meet us where we are and bring the Light.

They say it’s darkest just before dawn.

Hallelujah!  Here comes the Son!

 

Anita Everly is the wife of David and mom to their three sons.  She can be found watching the lives of her men unfold, creating a home, and encouraging other women in life and motherhood.  She is striving to live life on purpose because she is crazy in love with the One who is crazy in love with her.

One thought on “The Monday After: The Suffering Servant {Anita}

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