“For you have forgotten the God of your salvation and have not remembered the rock of your refuge. Therefore you plant delightful plants and set them with vine slips of a strange god.” (Isaiah 17:10, NASB95)
The Lord, through the prophet Isaiah, got to the heart of why the children of Israel were soon going to be punished and dispersed into a foreign land. They had forgotten the God of their salvation. They had forgotten all the times He was their rock and refuge. Listen, God knows and understands that we are a broken and sinful people. It is His love for us, despite our brokenness, that moves Him to continually redeem and save us. It is also true to say that it is our remembering of His acts of grace toward us that moves us to call upon Him when we find ourselves broken and undone. But what is He left with when those whom He has redeemed have forgotten their redeemer? How can He be a rock and a refuge to those who don’t turn to Him because they have forgotten His protective acts?
The Israelites — like too often you and me — got so caught up in the world they were living in that they forgot God’s place in their lives. Like the Israelites, we have work, family, activities that weigh us down and keep us more than occupied. We find ourselves “planting with vine slips of a different god.” Like the Israelites of Isaiah’s day, we get so consumed with the life that we are living that we forget the One who gave us that life. We forget the very One who provides us the air we breathe and the blessings we have.
In the middle of your busy day today, STOP! Look around your life and recognize God’s place in all of it. Remember your redeeming, loving, providing and protecting God.