“Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert” Isaiah 43:18.
Sometimes we study the past to gain a better understanding of other people and places. It’s good to reflect on the accomplishments of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rev. Jesse Jackson, but only if they motivate and inspire us to press on. Let us not forget how far we as a people still have to go.
1) Our average income is still lower than our White counterparts.
2) We are still the last to be hired and the first to be fired in most cases.
3) Our communities are still the major targets of illegal drug distribution.
4) We are still rejected for bank loans at a high rate.
5) Our children still make up the largest percentage of the incarcerated.
6) Too many of us still live, week to week.
In today’s scripture, Isaiah warned the children of Israel about dwelling too much in the past. God had released them from the bonds of slavery and set them on a new path, calling them out as His chosen people. Isaiah challenged them not to think that their greatest victories with the Lord were behind them. Isaiah charged them to forget the past. God had brought them through the Red Sea, and was prepared to take them through the wilderness.
Isaiah commanded the Israelites to look ahead because God would see them through doing a new thing in their lives. As a minister of God’s word, I believe and am convinced we should look forward for God to do a new thing in the Black community. God is not through with us yet. If He can make “a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert,” we know that He is able to move our present mountains out of our way. All Christians must hold out the hope of Christ as our banner for justice, we must greet every day expecting God to bless us.
We serve a God who is going to do a new thing, but we must trust and believe. When there seems to be no way, the Lord will create a way. God is able to do a new thing. He is able to do abundantly above all we ask and even think.
When there seems to be no remaining strength, we will declare we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. We must not dwell too long on the past. We must come to Christ expecting something new and fresh every day. God is doing a new thing. The former things were great and mighty, but there’s more to come.
In the quest for equality, Black tradition shows that the hope for change always began in the Black church. Black Christians have been the catalyst for revolutionizing and transforming our circumstances, so we must not stop now.
My weekly prayer is for the reader of this commentary to be spiritually inspired of God. Contact Expressions of Faith at P.O. Box 330127, Nashville, Tenn. 37203; or e-mail <watsonwr68@gmail. com>. God bless!