Isaiah 43:20 The wild animals honor me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland

And just how do animals honor God?

I must have ‘run through’ this verse numerous times without ever stopping to consider, to ponder, to PICTURE just what animals do with the water. Just how DO they drink, so that the Lord calls it honoring to Him?

The wilderness is not a place known for abundance of water. That animals and people alike all need water to live is a given. We can’t create water OR food for that matter out of nothing. Only God can.

So, what is the big deal about this particular verse that the Holy Spirit directed Isaiah to pen? It’s that I paused long enough to ask a second question. What kind of animal would balk at drinking water if he were thirsty? None.

When the Lord provides what the animals need, He is pleased when they USE His gifts. That’s what He wants. This is how they glorify Him, how they give Him honor (giving ‘kabod’ in the Hebrew) for His provision.

What about us, what about ME? Do I always honor God for His provision? Well, when I don’t use His gifts for their purpose, I can see that I DIS-honor Him. Not submitting to His wise gifts, ignoring them is a way of denying God’s provision. It’s a withholding ‘the glory due His name’ Psalm 29:2 Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

Last Sunday was one of those days when I flatly ignored God’s provision. And He, my good Father, let me ‘thirst’. I was working on a blog post, something I have tended to do on Sundays. But I was craving rest. All I really wanted to do was SIT DOWN and read. But I kept pushing, pushing to edit well and ‘cross the Ts and jot the Is’. You know, those final details that go with uploading a post.

Standing at my computer elevated on a high table in the kitchen area, I realized I had to stop. The time had come for our beloved evening ritual of talking over the day, discussing what we had read while I prepare dinner for us. I tried to gather 5 more minutes for the post, by asking Mike to empty the dishwasher. When he moved on to fixing me a drink, I knew I had to close my laptop. I finished after dinner.

But I was all out of sorts. My mood plummeted. ALL was wrong. That night I lay in bed creating imaginary scenarios, all because I had not allowed myself to rest. My mood poisoned Monday, made worse by the restless night.

Finally it hit me… much as I ENJOY writing, it is still work. And I ‘work’ the other 6 days of the week, whether it’s my language tutoring, volunteer gig, household chores, cooking, keeping up with friends who need a word of encouragement or even going to the gym. NONE of it is restorative. I enjoy those activities. But they aren’t rest.

Lightbulb moment! That’s it, I needed a day of rest! Not just one day, but weekly, as something to look forward to.

And He has already given it to me. That is what I saw this morning, reading about the very smart wild animals who make use of the provision that God supplies. Our Creator KNOWS just what we lack. We honor Him by taking up His gifts and enjoying them. By drinking deep. By resting.

So, today is Saturday. If I finish this post, great. If not, it can wait until Monday. I’m looking forward to tomorrow, to my Sabbath rest. Just thinking about sitting out back and reading makes me happy!