Thou Hast Been a Strength to the Poor!
When things are not going your way, hope is often all you have. It is one thing not to have enough money, but the person with hope is bolstered to believe as the old Negro spiritual says, “I’m so glad, trouble don’t last always.” Loneliness can choke and starve emotions, but hope of love and friendship and someone to talk with, can mean the difference between a miserable life and a joyful life. Love, that has dried up like a river in the desert, can leave one empty, frustrated and desperate for renewal. The hope that we obtain from our faith in Jesus Christ should be an encouragement that God does not desire suffering and pain and that one day, things will turn around for the better.
Isaiah, the prophet, preached and gave hope to the Hebrew people who were carried away to Babylon in exile. The whole Book of Isaiah is a prophecy of hope, restoration and renewal. Within an 70 year period of time, from 608 BC-538 BC , some think it was 586 BC – 516 BC, Cyrus of Persia liberated the captive Jews and they were free to return to Israel.
My encouragement to you today is that you might read chapter 25 of the Book of Isaiah, and let the Lord renew your hope and outlook on life. Thank you for taking the time to read these words.
Isaiah 25: 4 For you have been a refuge to the poor, a refuge to the needy in their distress, a shelter from the rainstorm and a shade from the heat. 
Questions for Reflection:
- How is the Lord a “Strength to the poor?”
- What does Isaiah 25:4 say to you?
Prayer: Lord, from the beginning of time you have been a refuge to the poor and needy. In my worst hour, you have provided me with hope. I seek your face for inspiration and direction. I seek your power and receive renewed confidence. Help me to look beyond the things that bother me. Renew my dreams. Restore my joy. Refresh my outlook on life in the confidence that in you, all things are possible! Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.
Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III
Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III
Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/