Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Etched in Love...


           My husband used to etch glass. He was really good at it too. What always intrigued me was how the chemical he used could pierce through some of the thickest glass. After the glass has been etched, it is forever marked, nothing can take it off. It is ingrained into the very makeup of the glass; it has become a part of the glass. As I was reading this morning, I came across a passage of scripture that reminded me of this etched glass. Our God is also an etcher, His love can pierce through the thickest darkness, and the strongest glass ever created. There is nothing too hard or too strong for our God. Though we may be in a place that feels like God has forgotten us, that He has left us, God ensures us that He has not. Just as the glass is permanently marked with the chemical used to etch it, so our hearts are forever etched upon by the love of God.
                “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely, they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me.” Isaiah 49:15-16
                To inscribe something means to carve it out, to engrave it, to mark something with indelible ink, very much like a tattoo. Once a tattoo goes on your skin, it is there until the day you depart the tent of flesh. God has tattooed you onto the palm of His hands, but this tattoo is forever. There is nothing, no one, not a thing that will take your name off His hand. Every time He opens His hands, there is your name, etched so deep that it will never fade.
                All the vessels of the temple were engraved upon. Anything that was used for the Lord’s glory was engraved, inscribed; they were etched for His personal use. You are God’s vessel; you have been etched upon for His use.  Sometimes I feel like the Lord has forgotten me, like He has left me, but that is never the case. He cannot forget me because I am ever before Him, He sees my name continually, all my walls are before Him. There is nothing hidden in His sight.
                We all go through periods of darkness, times where we feel like we are in a dessert, where we feel so alone because God is silent. It is in those moments when He is opening His hand, looking upon His engraved palm and saying to you, “I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palm of My hands,”. This to us is a reminder of His love and care for us, as well as His zeal, His devotion, His constant thoughts towards you.
                The Jews used to tattoo on their hands a representation of a city or temple to show others the devotion they had to that one place. The Lord God shows the same zeal and devotion to us by showing us our names tattooed onto the palm of His hands. Think about Jesus upon that cross, as the nails pierced His skin, as the pain of death surrounded Him. Your name was etched on those hands. You name was etched so deep that not even death could wipe it away. He has never forgotten you, He has always been with you. You may have turned away from Him, but He has never turned away from you. He cannot- because your name is forever inscribed upon His hand.
                His love for you is so great that He was willing to go through the pain of death, the pain of the beatings and mocking, the whipping, the scourging because He saw your name on His hand. Is there anything too hard for God? Is there something happening in your life right now that makes you wonder if God is even there? Perhaps you have fallen away from God, perhaps you have forgotten your first Love. Today the Lord God Almighty has opened His hand to you and is showing you the wonder of His love in the palm of His hand. There is nothing that can separate you from the Love of God, because your name, your life, your very breath is written, engraved, carved into His hand. He loves you with a perfect love, and in the palm of His hand He has etched your name to show you His undying and forever devotion to you.
                There is no darkness too thick, no ocean to deep, no dessert too wide, no mountain too high for Him. His love for you has been carved into the nail pierced hands of Jesus Christ. Nothing can ever wipe that away. Forever your name is before Him, forever He looks upon His hand and sees you. Wherever you are today, turn to the Lord God Almighty who has stretched out His hand to bring you back to the place you belong. You are His forever, He has tattooed you into the palm of His hand to show you how devoted He is to you.
                Just as a man who loves his woman will go through the pain of an earthly needle to inscribe her name on his arm, so the Lord loves you as well. He has gone through the pain of death and forever engraved you into His hands. The tattoo of the body will die with the man, but the tattoo the Lord has of you on His hand is forever, for all eternity. He is showing us today His love and devotion, no matter where we have gone, or from where we have fallen. Turn back to God your True Love today and let Him show you His palm, for your name is etched into it.

                This devotion today reminded me of a song by Third Day called “Love Song”. Take some time today and follow the link to the YouTube video and listen to this song. The love of the Lord Jesus is greater and wider, deeper and higher than any other you will ever know. There is nothing than can stop or separate His love for you. Call to Him and He will show you your name, engraved into the palm of His hands.