Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot— yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root.
I started watching a new series on Netflix a while back and it wasn’t long before I got bored with it and started to look for something else to watch. It was such a good show I can’t even remember what the name of it was! Has that ever happened to you? You start reading a book or watching a show and you find yourself bored or frustrated with it and you never finish it – you look for something different, something new? I feel like life gets like that, we find ourselves living in this story that is not going the way we want. We might even find ourselves wishing for a new story. Do you want a new story?
That’s one of the things Jesus Christ offers us in salvation. He offers us a new story. Isaiah tells Judah that our of the old root will come a new branch. Consider that old root your life, our tired world. Out of that old will come something new. Out of that tired will come something exciting. Out of that old root will come a new branch and with that new branch will come fresh fruit. It’s time for a new story! Jesus has brought that story for us and invited us to be a part of it.
Read Isaiah 11 carefully and check out the story we are invited to be a part of. It is a story with all kinds of characters – lions, lambs, children, wolves, bears, ox, and even snakes. All of them living together in peace and safety. All of them being welcomed despite the reputations they bring. This story Jesus brings with him is one of inclusive diversity. You don’t have to become someone you are not to join this story. The lion can still be a lion and the lamb can still be a lamb. You get to be you in this story!
Things in this story are different though. While the lion can still be a lion and the lamb can still be a lamb – their relationship has changed. The lion is no longer trying to kill and eat the lamb, they are living together. The lion, instead, is eating grass like the cow. Somewhere along the way the lion was changed. This story is one of transformation. In this story God makes us fully us, the us we were intended to be – the good us. The kind of us that can live in a story of peace and safety. It is a pretty amazing story – I really hope you will join.
Pastor Matt Huff leads Portland Central Nazarene Church. He loves being in ministry and seeing lives transformed by the power of Christ.