Isaiah 43

But now, this is what the LORD says-- he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze...

"You are my witnesses," declares the LORD, "and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am he. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me. I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior. I have revealed and saved and proclaimed-- I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses," declares the LORD, "that I am God. Yes, and from ancient days I am he. No one can deliver out of my hand. When I act, who can reverse it?"...

"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland. The wild animals honour me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the desert and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen, the people I formed for myself that they may proclaim my praise.

The title for our Bible Week this year was "All things New." When I read this chapter of Isaiah his morning, some of these verses just leapt out at me! It was if I was reading a summary of what God has said to me at the Bible week. This is what the Spirit of God stirred within me:

I am doing a new thing with you. This is the beginning. It is a time for holiness - a time to deal with the small sins that you thought I overlooked; to be pure - like a refreshing stream of water without pollution or taint, that delights my heart and brings refreshing to others.

It is a time to see me afresh, to see me in my glory, to see me and to worship me - for this is why you were created, this is why you were chosen, and this is why you were redeemed. This is why I saved you, that you might be a people who proclaim my praise.

It is a time to step out and be my witnesses. Do not fear man. Do not be afraid. The giants you fear, are but bluff and bluster. I am with you and you will not come to harm. I am watching over my people and my word to bless and to fulfill.

It is a time for the streams to flow in the wasteland. Those areas in your life that are dry and hard will flow with a freshness of my Spirit - and you will go out into those areas in your region that people have said are dry and dead and I will overflow my Spirit from you out into the barren places and bring life, and bring fruit and produce a harvest for the honour of my name and for my glory, declares the Lord.