Is. 54:1 “Sing, O barren, You who have not borne;”Break forth into into singing and cry aloud…”
Barren means lacking or unable to produce, or having no useful result, or lacking a desirable element- it means emptiness. Perhaps barrenness is being ashamed of the past, or feeling forsaken in the present, and being completely unsure of the future.
Sing, O barren? break forth into singing?
In Is. 54:7 God says, “For a mere moment I have forsaken you, but with great mercies I will gather you. With a little wrath I hid my face from you for a moment; But with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,” Says the LORD, your Redeemer.
Every day, God keeps telling me the same thing, yet in a different way: “Sing, O barren”.
So once again I am reminded of the story in 2 Chronicles 20,
“A great multitude is coming against us…” (2 Chron. 20:2) King Jehoshaphat cries out.
“And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.” (2 Chron. 20:3), then he spoke to God, (in my paraphrase)
Aren’t You God in heaven?Don’t You rule over everything? Isn’t there power and might in Your hand? Aren’t we Your people, didn’t we build You a temple to dwell in? and if disaster comes we will stand before You in our affliction, and You will hear and save.
“For we have no power against this great multitude coming against us, nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You.”(2 Chronicles20:12)
So, the Spirit of the LORD came upon Hahaziel…the son of so and so, and the son of so and so, of the sons of Asaph! Asaph? Asaph is the family of singers and players,( not sports, instruments!) and he said,” Don’t be afraid, don’t be discouraged because of this great multitude,
for the battle is not yours, but God’s.”((2 Chron 20:15)and verse 17 says,
“You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD, Who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem! Do not fear or be discouraged,…”
(I am seeing that ‘do not fear, don’t be discouraged’ is written two times, yes, I know why! because when we are barren, when we feel forsaken in our present, and completely unsure of our future, we get afraid, we get discouraged!
“Believe in the LORD your God”… King Jehoshaphat proclaimed!
And do you remember how they positioned themselves?
They appointed those who praise and sing to go on before the army saying: “Praise the LORD, For His mercy endures forever.”Now when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set up ambushes and the enemy was DEFEATED! 2 Chron 20:22!
Over and over again the Lord is showing me that Praise is a weapon! It will destroy the enemy of depression and the spirit of despair! It opens up the heavy curtain of darkness and allows the light to fill that ol’ barren space!
O my goodness, The hymn Leaning on His everlasting Arms is a perfect song to sing in barrenness:
vs.3 What have I to dread, what have I to fear? Leaning on the Everlasting Arms.
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near, Leaning on the Everlasting Arms.
Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms. Leaning, I’m leaning,
Leaning on the Everlasting Arms!