I said, “Woe is me, I am doomed!
For I am a man of unclean lips,
living among a people of unclean lips;
yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”
Then one of the seraphim flew to me,
holding an ember that he had taken with tongs from the altar.
He touched my mouth with it, and said,
“See, now that this has touched your lips,
your wickedness is removed, your sin purged.”
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying,
“Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?”
“Here I am,” I said; “send me!” (Is 6:5-8)
Isaiah was definitely a doomed individual. At least, at first glance, it would appear that way. After all, he discerned over and over again that God was calling him to be a prophet to God’s people.
We need to remember that prophets were not very popular. The messages that they brought to the people were challenges to change, to repent, to turn their lives around. Who wants to do that?
Instead of heeding the prophets, the people often put the prophets to death or, at the very least, caused them grave physical harm. So, on that level alone, Isaiah would have cause to be frightened.
However, Isaiah’s feelings of doom were even more dire because he had seen God Himself. Everybody knew that if a human saw God, that human would die. Isaiah’s sense of doom was intensified because, in the presence of God, he saw how sinful and imperfect he was.
God remedied that for him, however. He sent an angel to touch the lips of Isaiah with an ember from the altar and told him that he had been purified. Then God issued His great invitation: “Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?”
In the midst of what could only be described as terror and confusion, Isaiah had a moment of clarity: he knew that he was being called and he wanted to accept the invitation. “Here I am. Send me!”
There are many times that we come into contact with our weak, sinful self. We believe that we are doomed to die and eternal death. Yet the Lord calls us to rise above our sinfulness. He asks us to trust Him. He invites us to be His messengers in our world.
He is inviting us to be sent this day. What will be your answer?
FAITH ACTION: With the season of Lent fast approaching, consider how the Lord may be calling you to deeper faithfulness and trust. Ask Him to give you the grace to stand up for the faith.