1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. 3And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty;
the whole earth is full of his glory.”
4 At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
5 “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”
8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”Isaiah 6
How easy would it be for us to say, “Here I am Lord, send me!”, when faced with magnificence that Isaiah saw in his vision? I think I would be much like Arnold Horschach from Welcome Back Kotter. “OOH, OOH, OOH! I’ll go, I’ll do it! Send me!!!” Just the thought of such holiness brings waves of longing and contentedness and wonder. Looking around at the broken world around us, who among us wouldn’t desire to gaze on the glory of the Lord?
And yet it is this broken world around us that claims the gaze of God. It is this world that He desires us to go out into on His behalf, shining His radiance to the ones He loves. But whom is it that God loves? Whom are we to love on His behalf. Surely not the homeless man who sleeps in the trees at the park each night and searches for pop cans during the day to buy enough alcohol to keep him numb during the long frigid winter nights. God would not want us to love the young woman who walks the streets looking for her next “job”, oblivious to her beauty and worth in the Lord’s sight. Would He really ask us to help the fatherless boy who walks alone, head down and paints incredible works of art on the side of the buildings while his mom works three jobs. His artwork is just graffiti after all, not potential.
We can come up with a million reasons why we should just stay to ourselves. Money, time, safety, “that job belongs to someone else, God didn’t wire me that way.” “I’m too shy, I wouldn’t know what to say.” Yes, these are my reasons. It’s so easy to say, “God, send me!”, and yet when He says GO, I say, “Ummmmmmmm, I didn’t really mean that exactly Lord, could you just send me somewhere else? Maybe somewhere not quite so … real. OK?” But where we live is real.
Start with a smile. Progress to a “Hello”. Maybe even, “How are you?” and then wait for a real answer. Pray for them, then ask to pray with them. Pack a lunch for the homeless guy. Look the young woman in the eyes and smile. Show her that you truly see her. Maybe bring the young man some paints and paper. Service to God doesn’t have to be hard. It doesn’t take much to show people that you care about them.
Heavenly Father, we long to see your glory. Remind us that we do see you everywhere we are, everywhere we look. We see you in the world that Jesus came to serve. Help us to see that the places Jesus walked are the same places we are to walk. Among the broken, the poor, the hopeless. It’s grungy work, but we are grungy people too. Our mission is here and now. Forgive us Lord, for wanting to walk away instead of walk toward your world. In Jesus’ name, Amen