Mighty and Gentle

Veronica Burlock, Worship Pastor, Wheaton | December 18, 2023

You who bring good news to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good news. To Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, “Here is your God!” See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power, and he rules with a mighty arm. See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him. He tends to his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
Isaiah 40: 9-11

Isaiah was reminding the people of Judah to trust God’s promises even in the hardest times. He was encouraging them to remember that God is sovereign. Even in God’s discipline, he extends grace and love. 

I sat in silence one morning after having my time with God, and I realized that it is easy for me to believe that God is mighty in power and harder for me to believe that He is also a gentle shepherd. Sometimes I think God is too big and powerful to care about the things I need—almost like He doesn’t have time to be a gentle shepherd. 

Because I don’t expect Him to be gentle, I don’t look for the ways that He is. But He is. Isaiah says He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to His heart. God is not bound to time, and He certainly doesn’t worry about anything. He is Jehovah Shalom, the Lord our peace and also Jehovah Tsaba, the Lord our warrior. Hear the Lord saying to you “For I am the Lord your God who holds your right hand, who says to you, do not fear, I will help you” (Isaiah 41:13). God is “both/and”, he is mighty and gentle. He is strong and gracious. 

So I will ask you, which way is harder for you to view God? Mighty in power or a gentle shepherd? This season, ask God to give you the gift of notice. Ask Him to help you see Him as both mighty and gentle. This season take some time to slow down and notice all the ways God is showing you his power and his gentleness.

Next Steps

Earlier in the month, we suggested you carve out 30 minutes to an hour to recall all the major milestones and the ways that Jesus has been faithful to you. If you were able to do so, spend some time reflecting on those major milestones. If you weren’t, try to carve out the time this week, intentionally viewing God as your Good Shepherd.