Day 199: In the Eye of the Storm (Isaiah 26:3-4)

Photo taken by 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron inside the eye of Hurricane Dorian, September 2, 2019

Through the Bible: Isaiah 23-27

You keep him in perfect peace
    whose mind is stayed on you,
    because he trusts in you.
Trust in the Lord forever,
    for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.

Isaiah 26:3-4 (ESV)

Normally, when you think about being in the eye of a storm, do you imagine calm or chaos? When its tornado season, and your local stormchaser flashes the map on the screen and tells you your town is in the cone of uncertainty, or that “this one is going to go RIGHT. OVER. THE TOP. OF YOU! So if you aren’t already in your safe place, get there,” what is your first thought?

Oh, I’m in the eye of the storm. All is well.


I am in the eye of the storm. This is very, very bad.

The eye of the storm is not a place any of us wants to be. There may be a moment or two of calm, but you have already been through half the hurricane, and you know the back half is often much worse.

We have already talked about the “groans and glory” structure of Isaiah, how the first 39 chapters is a lot of bad news and prophecies of judgment, while the last 27 chapters deal with the coming Messiah. Certainly, if you have been keeping up with the daily reading, the last few days have been bleak. Judgment on Tyre. Judgment on Cush. On Egypt. On Assyria, Moab, Cush, Jerusalem, Arabia, Dumah, Babylon, Damascus, Philistia, and Israel. By the time you get to chapter 25, you are beginning to wonder if there is anyone left for God to judge. Then you see the chapter heading of Isaiah 24, and you get your answer: THE EARTH JUDGED.

Sigh. How many chapters of groans? 39? So… fifteen more chapters of this?


But then we get to Isaiah 26:3, and it’s as though the clouds break, and sunbeams fall on the ruined land:

You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.

In the eye of the storm, God promises peace. There are many woes and judgments to come before we get to the New Testament on October 1. But here, in the eye of the storm, there is the promise of peace for those whose minds are stayed on God.

How is that possible? When circumstances are swirling around us, can we really find peace? No. Not on our own. Oh, we try. We run from the storm. We hide from the storm. We ignore We self-medicate in order to numb ourselves from the storm. But none of that brings real peace. It may be a counterfeit piece, but it is definitely not a perfect piece.

There is an obligation. This is a transaction. God says “I will keep you in perfect peace, IF your mind is stayed on God. If I can keep my mind fixed on the Lord, His peace is guaranteed.

In his grace, God knew we couldn’t even keep our end of the bargain without His help. That is why, in John 14, Jesus (who that night was in the eye of a bigger storm than any of us could possibly imagine) told His disciples:

27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. (Jn 14:27)

The peace Jesus gives us doesn’t depend on our ability to keep our minds fixed on God. It is ours no matter how prone to wander we are. It is ours no matter how much we are prone to leave the God we love. The peace of Christ, like a fetter, binds our wandering hearts to His.

We can rest in the eye of the storm, because the Lord of the storm has His eye on us.






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