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The Darling Blog

Welcome to The Darling Blog, a life and style blog by the owner of Darling Boutique, Linnea White. Darling is passionate about empowering women and inspiring strength through fashion to restore dignity and true beauty. Enjoy outfit inspiration and style tips, featured #darlingfinds, local collaborations, and so much more. Live the Darling lifestyle - an altogether beautiful life.

Filtering by Category: Isaiah

Devotional Series: Isaiah, Week 5

Linnea White

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Isaiah, Week 5 | Finished

Isaiah 53

If you have ever struggled with doubt, or have ever felt like no one can relate to what you are going through, then this a message for you. If you have ever felt rejection from a parent, spouse, friend, or loved one, then this message is for you. If you have ever felt crushed in spirit, or judged, then this message is for you. If you have ever suffered or been in pain, then this message is for you.

You can see where I am going here - this message is for everyone, wherever you are at or have been. You see, that is how God is. He meets us wherever we are at, showing us His unfailing love in the midst of every situation.

Let me preface this scripture by giving a little bit of information about the prophesier, Isaiah. He prophesied about the promise land, the chosen people, and about the coming of the Messiah. He spoke of these prophecies around 600-700 B.C. The words he spoke about the coming King, the prophecies he told, were fulfilled in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

WOW, is right! God gave Isaiah vision of the coming King, of the one true Messiah, of the Son of God, all while Israel was stuck in the midst of destruction and sin. God gave him vision of life in the midst of death all around him. This hope that God was showing Isaiah, was about a coming time when God himself would take on all of the suffering, pain, rejection, hurt, and oppression to give man a place of peace.

"Who has believed our message     and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot,     and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,     nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was despised and rejected by mankind,     a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces     he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain     and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God,     stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions,     he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him,     and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,     each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him     the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted,     yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,     and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,     so he did not open his mouth.

By oppression and judgment he was taken away.     Yet who of his generation protested? For he was cut off from the land of the living;     for the transgression of my people he was punished.

He was assigned a grave with the wicked,     and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence,     nor was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,     and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days,     and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

After he has suffered,     he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,     and he will bear their iniquities.

Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,     and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death,     and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many,     and made intercession for the transgressors."

Jesus lived a life where he was despised and rejected by mankind.

Jesus made His life an offering to sin.

The will of the Lord prospered in Jesus' hands and by His wounds we have been healed.

IMG_1655Whatever you are going through, whatever life has thrown at you, trust that it has been finished in Jesus. Jesus tells us when he was being crucified at the cross, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:30

All of your pain, suffering, and hurt is covered by the blood of Jesus.

All of your sin and regret has been covered by the blood of Jesus.

Jesus, died of for you to have life and life in abundance.

Jesus, hung on the cross for you to have peace.

I pray you rest in His peace and find hope in knowing that He laid down His life for you to live.

Be Blessed, Megan

Devotional Series, Isaiah: Week 4

Linnea White

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Isaiah, Week 4 | WAIT

Isaiah 30, 49

Lately, this four letter word has been on the forefront of my mind. I'll give you a hint: it is an action that causes you to make things come to a holt. Any takers?

WAIT.

And, you see, this little four letter word is shockingly complex. The patience involved in the action of waiting is jaw grinding. This past week and a half, God has been wrecking me. He has been showing me that I have a problem with waiting, and let me be the first to say it is quite humbling. I have been day in and day out wrestling with God and praying that He will give me wisdom and vision, and while He has been little by little, the act of waiting on Him may be the hardest of it all. I firmly know and trust there is nothing outside of the will of God that I want. However, it is in the time of waiting upon Him to make a way that my patience and obedience in being still falters.

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I thought I would share with you all the scriptures that have been filling my spirit and giving me peace in this time of waiting:

"But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles they shall run and not be weary: they shall walk and not faint." Isaiah 40:31

"The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to those who seek Him." Lamentations 3:25

"Therefore, the Lord waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy on you. For the Lord is a God of justice, blessed are those who wait for Him." Isaiah 30:18

"I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! Wait for the Lord, be strong and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:13-14

In the time of waiting, we are to praise God, because He will hold us up and equip us to walk in His promises.

In the time of waiting, we are to continually seek Him.

In the time of waiting, we are to trust that He is good to us and constant despite our circumstances.

In the time of waiting, we are to worship Him for who He is.

In the time of waiting, God tells us that we are blessed. 

In the time of waiting, God is strengthening our hearts.

In the time of waiting, God is teaching us to be courageous.

In the time of waiting, we must be patient and soak in His presence.

I can tell you this - we are blessed to be able to sit and soak in the presence of God. To sit and listen to Him call us by name and lead us into the next season. As the leaves change and fall off the trees, God uses change to bring about something beautiful, even in its mess.

Be blessed and be encouraged, friends.

Megan

Devotional Series: Isaiah, Week 3

Linnea White

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Isaiah, Week 3 | Holy, Holy, Holy

Isaiah 6

Can you believe it? Can you even fathom what it would be like to see the Holy Angels who surround God's throne calling out, "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord Almighty, the whole earth is full of his glory." What a glorious picture it paints. Isaiah says, "at the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke" (Isaiah 6:3-4). The angels cry out and proclaim his goodness, they proclaim is holiness.

Holy = set apart. God is set apart from His creation. He is perfect, He is pure.

Isaiah, on the other hand was neither of those things. He was a sinful man who explains that his lips were unpure. So, here Isaiah sits in the thrown room of God filled with sin, and recognizes that he is unworthy to be in the presence of God. He cried out, "Woe to me, I am ruined!". The moment that he cried out for God, he was met by a seraph (God's most holy angels) and his unclean lips were touched by coal from the God's altar. The seraph said to him, "See, this has touched your lips, your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for" (Isaiah 6:7).

imageGod took away the sins of Isaiah, this was not because of any works that Isaiah had done. It was purely because Isaiah recognized how much he needed God and God heard his cry. Once Isaiah had a heart change and was made pure by the grace of God, he was then able to hear God.

Isaiah heard God asking, "Whom shall I send?" and because his heart was right with God, he declared, "Here I am! Send me!" God responded, "GO!" (Isaiah 9:9).

Isaiah could not fulfill the commission that God had for him while he was covered in sin. It was not until Isaiah cried out for God, and received God's grace that he could live out God's call on his life.

"Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:29-30

Do you ever struggle with hearing God? I believe that God gave Isaiah this vision to give us guidance on entering into the Holy presence of God. We must proclaim the Lord is Holy and apart from Him we can do nothing. We must exalt Him, ask for forgiveness, and let his grace fall upon us for restoration. Friends, I encourage you to soak in His Holy presence and open your heart to hear his voice. God has a mighty plan for your life and is commissioning you to GO.

Be blessed! Meg

Devotional Series: Isaiah, Week 2

Linnea White

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Isaiah, Week 2 | Exaltation

Exalted: Placed in high regard, lifted to a powerful level.

"The eyes of an arrogant man will be humbled and the pride of men brought low; the Lord alone will be exalted in that day and the idols will totally disappear." Isaiah 2:17-18

I see an epidemic of anxiety in our nation, in our world. I believe it is because of the need to lay worries and burdens down at the foot of the cross. We need to allow God to humble us. Without Him, you and I would not be able to breathe breath into our lungs. We would have no beautiful trees to gaze at, and no sun to shine upon our faces.

When we realize we do not have the capacity emotionally, physically, spiritually to do anything apart from God, we stop making the things of the world idols and begin to turn to Him for every aspect of our lives. Jobs, homes, relationships, comforts, and the future all consume us. When these things are what fuels our decisions instead of Jesus, they become idols. They will not fill us up, no matter how "beautiful" they are, no matter how "lovely" the relationships are - they cannot and will not be what fills the voids in our hearts. Those places can only be filled by His perfect love. Because, to be honest, no matter how hard we try, we mess up, we fall short, and Jesus is the only one who never has and never will.

"There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear" 1 John 4:18IMG_1227

When we are filled and fueled by His love, all of our fears can no longer stay.

When we allow God to humble us and give us humility, it exalts our perfect, mighty creator God. It allows us to place our fears, anxieties, and agendas at the feet of Jesus. What a beautiful exchange!

Exalting God and becoming humbled is an action that gives us rest in His presence - something only achieved because of the work Jesus did on the cross.

My prayer for all of us is that God would bring to light any idols or "things" that are holding us back from the goodness and Lordship of Jesus.

We exalt you, King Jesus. We lift you up. We welcome your presence. May your kingdom come and your will be done... and all the people said, amen!

Be blessed this week, friends.

Meg

Devotional Series: Isaiah, Week 1

Linnea White

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Isaiah, Week 1 | Worship

I will upfront say that what I have to say in this devotional on Isaiah might offend you. Hopefully will challenge you. Above all else, my desire for this series is for it to heighten your desire to seek Jesus with your entire being.

Isaiah was a prophet who many scholars assume walked the earth around 700 years before Jesus. In the book of Isaiah we can learn about God’s character, God’s Father heart, God as the ultimate creator, God’s love, God’s righteous anger, God’s plan for redemption through the coming of Jesus, and how one can receive freedom through pursuing God fully.

This book covers many different aspects of the Christian faith. It allows us to see the complexity of God, and understand that we need to love Him with every part of us in order for Him to be Lord over our lives.

I love how every person's name in the bible foreshadows their character as a person. Isaiah means salvation of the Lord.

God gave Isaiah vision about the coming King. God gave Isaiah boldness to speak truth to the nation of Israel. God told Isaiah to speak to the nations about repentance and salvation.

The nation Isaiah was speaking to was Israel, a nation filled with God’s chosen people. This nation, however, was living in rebellion. I believe God was speaking to Israel, but I also believe there is a reason why we have this book easily accessible for us to read. North American Christian Churches, I think we need to read this book and pray about what God is saying to us through Isaiah.

How often are people praying for one another? How often do people turn to prayer in a time of need? How often do people turn to prayer in a time of praise? How often do we thank God in the midst of chaos and pain because we know that His plans are greater than ours?

The religious leaders in Israel at the time of Isaiah were performing sacrifices and partaking in specific rituals and customs of Jewish law. While they were outwardly doing what they were religiously supposed to do, they were offending God.

They were offensive to God because He knew their hearts were not in line with His.

God knew they were not genuine because they were not caring or concerned for others. Their focus was continually inward; they had a consumeristic mindset, "What can this do for me?" And this is where I may offend you in saying that in present day, I believe this is a common outlook for many Christians. "What can Jesus do for me? If I pray for all of these selfish things maybe God will give them to me!" This is not the heart of God. This is not God’s desire for us as follower’s of Him. Yes, He wants us to turn to Him and pray to him for every aspect of our life, but we should selflessly pray for His will to be done above all else.

God knew His people’s hearts were not in line with His because of their actions towards others.

"Your hands are full of blood; wash and make yourselves clean, Take your evil deeds out of my sight! Stop doing wrong, learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, Plead the case of the widow." Isaiah 1:16-17

IMG_1025This is why I believe it is something that needs to be brought to many Christians' attention. I know this because God knows the desires of our hearts - good actions with selfish intention are not pleasing to God. I know this because God clearly tells us to stop doing wrong and learn to do right. He tells us to seek justice and encourage the oppressed. He tells us to defend the fatherless. Christians, we are given responsibility by God to look after orphans and widows. We know this, and yet there are currently around 300,000 children in foster care and approximately 300,000 churches in America. We are not fulfilling our responsibility as followers of Jesus.

If our hearts as Christians are fully in line with Gods, then we will worship him and be inspired to reach out and help others, just as Jesus would do!

God desires for us to seek Him and allow Him to shape our hearts to be more like His.

"Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool. If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the best from the land; but if you resist and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken." Isaiah 1: 18-20

Friends, I pray that you will be challenged to worship the Lord like never before. I pray that you will be transformed by His goodness and love for you. I pray that your heart will be shaped and molded to be inspired to help the poor, sick, needy, and fatherless. I challenge you this week to go out of your way to help others and worship the Lord through doing so!

Be blessed this week.

Xo, Meg