The mountains and hills will burst into song before you. Isaiah 55:12
“Look, Papa! Those trees are waving at God!” As we watched young birches bending in the wind before an oncoming storm, my grandson’s excited observation made me smile. It also made me ask myself, Do I have that kind of imaginative faith?
Reflecting on the story of Moses and the burning bush, the poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote that “Earth’s crammed with heaven, / And every common bush afire with God; / But only he who sees, takes off his shoes.” God’s handiwork is evident all around us in the wonders of what He has made, and one day, when the earth is made new, we’ll see it like never before.
God tells us about this day when He proclaims through the prophet Isaiah, “You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands” (Isaiah 55:12). Singing mountains? Clapping trees? Why not? Paul noted that “the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21).
Jesus once spoke of stones crying out (Luke 19:40), and His words echo Isaiah’s prophecy about what lies ahead for those who come to Him for salvation. When we look to Him with faith that imagines what only God can do, we’ll see His wonders continue forever!
What do you imagine the new earth will be like in God’s forever kingdom? How will you serve Him with imagination today?
Loving God, I praise You that no one is more creative than You are! I look forward to seeing the wonder of all that You are and all that You can do!
For further study, read All Creation Sings.
Reading the prophetic books can be challenging, because we must pay close attention to know who’s speaking. In Isaiah 55:1–5, God speaks; verses 6–7 mark a switch to Isaiah as the speaker. The prophet urges his listeners to heed God’s message. What’s that message? God invites everyone who is needy to “come, buy and eat!” (v. 1) and to “give ear and come to me” (v. 3). Isaiah reinforces this message by imploring the people to “seek the Lord while he may be found” (v. 6). This requires repentance: “Let the wicked forsake their ways,” including even “their thoughts” (v. 7). Left to ourselves, neither our actions nor our thoughts can please God (v. 8). For that, we need “the Holy One of Israel” (v. 5)—Jesus Himself.