“Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains might quake at your presence—as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil—to make your name known to your adversaries, and that the nations might tremble at your presence!” Isaiah 64:1-2, ESV
I’ll straight up cry through all the Christmas carols, but I don’t usually tear up in the middle of Isaiah for no reason. However, when these verses were read aloud at church a couple weeks ago, they sounded comforting and exciting. These are my kind of words! The passage goes on to describe how when the Lord did awesome things they did not look for, the mountains quaked at His presence. He made the Israelites melt in the hand of their iniquities.
I tried to explain to a friend how I would rather melt in the hand of my iniquities than “feel a little backslidden,” and how the God I love is the kind who made Israel fade like a leaf and then orchestrated a heavenly plan to restore them and then grafted us into that salvation, and wasn’t it amazing …
Basically, I rambled. And because this was a patient friend, a nice friend, a friend who is used to me getting a little more emotional than New Englanders usually get about a random bit of scripture spoken aloud at church, she let me exult until I was all out of words. And then she smiled and said, “That was your fangirl voice.”
Apparently, I use the same voice to preach the deep, abiding wonderfulness of Isaiah 64 as I do describing the new trailer for the season finale of “Arrow.” But I can’t help it! I don’t want to help it. I mean, maybe it would be better to try and modulate my passions, but I’m pushing forty and I have accepted my lack of chill.
The language that describes God, His purposes and His ways is rich, evocative, and should not only fill us with awe but leave us almost breathless as we try to praise Him. The best part about being a fan of any kind is that when we find bits like Isaiah 64 that thrill us to our dry, weary bones, we can stand up among the people and say, “Yes! This is my God!” And yes, we’ll be loud about it because what if the person sitting next to us is completely lost? What if he or she can’t begin to imagine fire kindling a brushpile on a cold, trembling night? I’m not saying it’s us versus them, I’m saying how fortunate we are to have each other. In verse 9, there is another plea. This time it is less eloquent, but more heartfelt:
Be not so terribly angry, O Lord, and remember not iniquity forever. Behold, we are all your people.
See? It’s okay. Blessed are the specfans. For behold, we are all His people.
Megan Ebba was a staffworker with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and a librarian before becoming a writer. In 2014, she won the ACFW’s Genesis contest in the speculative fiction category. Megan lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.