“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor.” Isaiah 61:1-2 (NIV)
Isaiah was a Spirit-filled prophet of the Most High. When he wrote the above passage, it was somewhere between 740- 681 BC, and it was all fulfilled approximately 700 years later when Jesus came to our neighborhood (See Luke 4: 18-10).
The most exciting thing, however, is that this promise from the Holy Spirit is still valid to anyone who thirsts for our loving Heavenly Father, even today.
I recently had the privilege of hearing a young man’s testimony just before his baptism. He reported that he had been born with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), and his early months were spent with his alcoholic parents. He was under a year of age when, for no known reason, his dad broke his feet. The police took him away from his biological parents after this, and he was put into foster care. Unfortunately, no one seemed to know how to manage a baby with FAS, and before he was finally adopted, the child went through nine different foster homes.
Everyone thought it was great when his last set of foster parents actually adopted him. Unfortunately for him, his adoptive father began abusing him, as well as his sister, almost immediately. It was years before this abuse was uncovered, but when his adoptive mother found out, she left her husband.
As this child grew into a young man, he found himself surrounded by people; yet he never found friendship. He felt completely alone.
One day he was flipping through TV channels when something a preacher was saying caught his attention: “Do you feel lonely, without any hope? Come to God. He will give you hope.”
Intrigued, he started to talk with our Heavenly Father and he immediately felt God’s love. He became hooked on God and spent time with Him every day. Gradually his loneliness and despair was replaced with joy. He met a lovely girl and they were soon engaged. His life was turning around. He now had but one wish: To have a Christian male friend.
A series of miracles put this young man in the same place at the same time as one of the members of our church. The young man’s wish was fulfilled: He found a Christian male friend, and through this, he also found a church home.
This man testified that he no longer ever feels alone, for God’s Holy Spirit dwells in him. He completed his testimony by encouraging the assembly: “If you feel alone in the darkness, just know that you are never alone. God is there for you.”
In summary, this young man described his past as lost and sad, but his present he describes as happy, excited and joyful. He was ecstatic when he found out he could be baptized.
The words of Isaiah 61:1-2 are active and fulfilling. May we too, broadcast this terrific news. After all, we are here to testify of our loving Father.
Are you alone in darkness? Your Heavenly Father is here for you. He will never abandon you. He wants you to be His friend, and with the God of the universe, the God of love at your side, a bright future awaits you.
(To access the entire “The Witness” devotional series, please click here.)