“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of God will stand forever.”(Isaiah 40:8). THIS IS A GREAT WORD OF HOPE. Despite experiencing exile and living in oppression, God speaks words of everlasting consolation : Nachamu, nachamu ammi : “Comfort, comfort my people…” (Isa. 40:1). There is a glorious future for you, even if your present circumstances seem overwhelming and your heart’s cry seems unanswered. These were God’s words of encouragement to the Jewish exiles that were carried away into Babylonian captivity. Despite the appearance of ruin, God promised to establish Zion as the praise of the earth. God is the only enduring Reality in a constantly changing world, and He has designed it this way to cause men’s hearts to search for him. “All flesh is grass, and all its beauty is like the flower of the field” – such is the condition of this ephemeral world with its flux and fortunes. The flesh fades because the breath of the LORD blows upon it (Isa. 40:7). God Himself has ordained human life to be a vapor…. Nonetheless we are told not to fear, because there is good news for Zion: the LORD is coming with might to reward those who are waiting for him. He will tend his flock like a shepherd; he will gather his lambs and carry them close to his heart. As the apostle Peter said, this good news is the eternal life given through the imperishable “seed” – the Word of God that rises forever in Yeshua (1 Pet. 1:23-25).The nations of this world are reckoned as less than nothing; their glory is “tohu” – confusion and unreality – and their princes are regarded as utter vanity. “Scarcely are they planted and have taken root when He blows upon them and they wither to become dust carried off by the storming winds” (Isa. 40:24). The nations of the earth are dried grasses; the kings of the earth are withered flowers. But God is incomparably great and will fulfill his promises to Israel: “The word of our God will stand forever.” He created the heavens and calls each star by name. He is invincible in power and no one can overrule His will. This world is not our home; we are “strangers” here. It is an affliction to wait for the LORD, a sort of “homesickness” of heart… The apostle Paul says our loneliness and alienation prepare for us an “eternal weight of glory” beyond all comparison, because we are not looking at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen. “For what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal” (2 Cor. 4:17-18). Just as the “two-souled” man is unstable in all his ways, so the process of being “educated for eternity” means learning to focus our heart’s passion and hope on the glory of heaven. “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Those who wait for the LORD inwardly groan to be clothed with immortality and eternal life, and their consolation is great indeed. Yeshua is “preparing a place for you,” an everlasting place of refuge whose builder and maker is God (Heb. 11:10). Faith sees beyond the shadows of this world to behold your true home with your Heavenly Father.