If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good things of the land. (Isa. 1:19)
I used to watch a TV show called Undercover Boss. In the show, corporate executives would pretend to be average workers within their own corporations. They would take the opportunity to examine the way internal operations were being handled. Usually, two things happened in a regular episode. First, the boss would discover a person who was not following the vision of the organization wholeheartedly. Second, the boss would encounter someone who embodied the spirit of the organization but was facing personal challenges, such as the accruing uncontrollable debt. By the end of the show, the executives would reveal their identities. The mediocre workers would be admonished, while the committed workers would be honored. My favorite episodes were the ones in which the boss would pay off the debt of an exceptional worker.
Isaiah 1 shows something radical. The Lord, who is at work in history, examined the way his people advanced his mission. Unfortunately, the overall performance of the people was deficient. They were accused of being rebellious and unfaithful. They were admonished to return to the heart of God. Surprisingly, though, the Lord offered to cancel the debt, not of the exemplary people, but of the ones who had been disobedient. Unlike the TV show, the Lord’s generous mercy was dispensed to underserving ones, so that they could be empowered to respond faithfully to the mission of God.
Thank Jesus for canceling your debts. Engage in the mission of God.
Luigi Peñaranda is an associate professor of global leadership and Latino/Latina Christian studies at Wesley Seminary of Indiana Wesleyan University.
© 2020 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.