One of the easier and tempting mindsets is for one to sit back and wait for Jesus to show up and show out. Many a person who has suffered in life, suffers because they “Wait for the Lord.” These are the people who do not work as hard as they should, could or would, because they are too intent on seeing what the Lord will do for them.
The Prophet Isaiah preached to the Jewish people in Babylon that their exile was almost over. It may have surprised some that he included in his prophecy of hope and good news that the exiles also had a responsibility to prepare the way for their own liberation.
Oppressed and marginalized people today could learn a thing or two from the prophet. First, we must understand that freedom is not free. The underdog must still bark and scrap for his and her survival. Too often, we sit around wondering when our change will come, rather than standing up, advocating and fighting for ourselves.
Another dimension of this prophecy is the expectation of God that those who believe in salvation through Jesus Christ must also witness for Christ. The Lord wants and needs you and me to be brave enough to tell friends and strangers that Jesus is real, Jesus can and will make a difference in your life, and that Jesus will wipe out your sins and grant you eternal life.
Isaiah 40: 3 A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 
Questions for Reflection:
- How can a believer in Jesus “prepare the way of the Lord?”
- With all of our frailties and missteps, what can we do to be a help to the Lord?
Lord, I want to work in the vineyard for the coming of your kingdom. Take away my fear. Take away my doubts. Take away whatever it is that is holding me back from serving you. Endow me with a high energy desire to change the world: to feed the poor, heal the sick, and spread the good news of your grace and mercy. Lord, I am ready to walk through the fire, jump into cold water, and swim against the stream for you. Lord, I am ready to serve you. Lord, I am ready to witness for you. Lord, I am ready to go the distance for you. Come what may, I am yours. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.
Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III
Photo by Mike Daniels “River Baptism 2015” (the Detroit River)
Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/
 The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Is 40:3). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.