“so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11 (NIV)
Do you ever get overwhelmed when you sit down to read your Bible?
Me too … especially when I’m feeling worn down and worn out.
When we’re in these desperate places, it’s easy to simply want God to rain down “right now” wisdom full of answers and solutions for what’s breaking our hearts. But spending time in God’s Word actually offers us so much more than quick fixes. You see, the Bible doesn’t just give us instruction for today — it also plants wisdom in our hearts for the future.
We see this powerful truth in Isaiah 55:10-11 (ESV), which says:
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”
This water imagery would have been quite significant to the people of Israel. Because of where they lived, they were heavily dependent on seasonal rains for water. Water simply wasn’t as easily accessible to Israel as it was for other nations like Egypt with its Nile River.
The Israelites’ need to depend on God for physical sustenance and satisfaction served as a continual reminder of their need to depend upon Him spiritually as well.
They didn’t just need the rain for immediate relief for themselves or nourishment for their plants. The rains served a dual purpose — enabling the crops to flourish for food that year as well as enabling the crops to produce the seeds necessary for the following year.
The water provided not only sustenance for the present but assurance for the future.
How like the Word of God.
Scripture, like rain, brings us immediate nourishment and refreshment for our present circumstances, (Psalm 19:7-10) and it also waters seeds to sustain us in the future. (Isaiah 55:10) God already sees everything coming our way, and that means He knows exactly how to begin preparing our hearts today for tomorrow.
I’ve seen this to be so true in my own life.
Recently, I was at a women's gathering where I was about to walk out and study the Bible with others. And just minutes before, I got a call that ripped my heart out of my chest. The news absolutely devastated me … but I also had an assignment before me.
So I took a deep breath.
I wiped my tears.
I whispered the one shred of truth I could remember from Bible verses that had been on repeat in my mind: God is faithful. Living water for my soul. (Isaiah 55:10-11; John 7:38; John 4:13-14)
Then I turned to my friends who were with me and said, “This is what it looks like to walk in the strength of the Lord. Never forget this. He is always faithful.” I stepped into studying Scripture and was astounded by the power of the Holy Spirit that poured out.
I don’t tell you this to highlight my own strength because frankly I didn’t feel like I had much at that moment. But if you’re asking yourself, Does it really matter if I read God’s Word today? … remember that storing Scripture deep in our hearts prepares us for the most unpredictable moments. The unforeseeable circumstances. The moments that take our breath away, leaving us no other option but to trust God to carry us through.
So friend, let’s open God’s Word today. Whether you feel like it or you’re not sure you can, even if it’s just one or two verses, read Scripture. And more than just reading His words, we must choose to receive them. Even more importantly, we must live them.
Because the more we apply God’s teaching to our lives, the more it becomes part of us. For today. For one day. For every day.
Lord, when I feel worn down and tired, help me to be intentional with spending time in Your Word. Let the truth on the pages sink deeply into my heart and remind me of who You are, even when I am faced with difficult circumstances. When I don’t know what to do, I know I can rely on You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
OUR FAVORITE THINGS
We know the feeling of desperately wanting to experience a breakthrough for yourself or someone you love. The prayers prayed. The tears cried. The time invested. God's Word is the only investment that won't return empty. Investing in God’s Word is an investment in her — your friend, your daughter, your mother, your sister. No matter what, we can be assured His Word never returns void. That’s why, at Proverbs 31 Ministries, we’re here to reach her with Truth that changes everything. Will you help us continue to provide free biblical resources to you and other women like you by donating today?
Find real-life encouragement when you connect with Lysa TerKeurst here on Instagram.
FOR DEEPER STUDY
Psalm 19:7, “The law of the LORD is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple.” (NIV)
What if God’s Word is the immediate refreshment your heart needs today? Take time today to read and write down one or two verses. As you sit with them, let them bring peace to your soul.
We’d love to hear from you! Share your thoughts in the comments.
© 2022 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
P.O. Box 3189
Matthews, NC 28106