"Rise up, you women who are at ease, hear my voice" (Isa. 32:9).
Happy New Year!
The last Christmas Hallmark movie has been watched and the decorations stored. Except for one kind of big thing: the tree. Alas, the rapidly falling needles beg to differ as they create a pattern of snow across the floor. It is, I am reminded, a new decade after all.
With renewed vigor, I sat down this morning with my Bible and began to read and pray through Scripture. The words "rise up" filled my mind, and I knew that 2020 was going to be a decade of adventure with the mighty Yahweh! I took it further, daring to ask the Lord if He had spoken thus to women and immediately began to search my trusted concordance. To my surprise, Isaiah 32:9 declared just that.
"Rise up, you women who are at ease, hear my voice; you careless daughters, give ear to my speech" (Isa. 32:9).
Now I am not one to ever be defined as "at ease," so I dug a little further. What I read was a voice of urgency spoken from the Lord to the women He loved so much. He was depending on His daughters to make a difference in the land. A culture shift had begun to absorb the people of God in Isaiah's day, and the one true God said, "Women, rise up!" He urged the women to stop thinking of themselves in a complacent way of everyday lists and people pleasing and to wake up to the thought that the heart of a woman matters in a nation. So much so that He suggests a period of mourning over what was happening in the culture. "The vintage is ended and the fruit gathering shall not come" (Isa. 32:10b) is most certainly speaking of the future of the nation and their children, the fruit of their loins and hearts.
It doesn't take much to parallel the thoughts of this passage written in the eighth century B.C. with the realities of A.D. 2020. Women cannot be complacent about the social media that invades the minds of our families, with the declarations of the culture that try to force our Judeo-Christian beliefs into a corner in the name of tolerance. Nor can we be intimidated by those who call us "haters" because we refuse to change the Scripture to fit trends. This we are not. We love and we love strong, but if we adapt truth to opinion, then we are no longer genuine in our love. When we rise up and rise above the noise, we are ready to stand and to share what we believe and why. We heed the call to "hear my voice" and to "give ear to my speech," for we know it to be the voice of one who loves us so.
Daughters of God, I invite you to rise above with me and all the "She Loves Out Loud" sisterhood in leaving the complacency of "good enough" and "list checked" and accepting the challenge to fast with us through Feb. 15, 2020, as we prepare for women to join hearts across America to Love Out Loud! in Jesus' name. Fasting clarifies our priorities and leads us into praise, and that is what every woman of God longs for.
Pray and Focus On:
—The No. 1 stronghold that's hindering your walk with Christ. (By the way, you already know what that is! Let's deal with it in 2020 once and for all.)
—That women across America would unite hearts on Feb. 15, 2020, through She Loves Out Loud to pray together in Jesus' name and share hope, comfort, healing and joy.
Ways You Can Fast
—Abstain from one meal a day, or practice intermittent fasting.
—Abstain from TV or social media for a segment of time.
—Abstain from all food, observing a juice and water fast.
—Abstain from all meats and sweets, having only vegetables and other foods (the Daniel Fast).
—Abstain from sugar and all sweets.
Can we as women of faith open our arms wide without altering our beliefs? Absolutely. To find out more, go to shelovesoutloud.org.
In addition, every Wednesday at noon CST, we will be gathering to pray and fast together in our private She Loves Out Loud Facebook group. You can go here to join us.
Diane Strack is the founder of She Loves Out Loud, a movement and event encouraging groups of women across the nation to gather in their homes, churches and workplaces to pray for healing, unity and restoration for women worldwide. A nationwide livestream event will occur Feb. 15, 2020. More information is available at shelovesoutloud.org.
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