Good Morning!July 4, 2012 - 5:00 am
“Stop trusting in mere humans,
who have but a breath in their nostrils.
Why hold them in esteem?“— Isaiah 2:22
Trust in God, not in man. Isn’t that, well, obvious? Of course we trust only in God! Why did Isaiah, in this passage, think otherwise?
According to ancient tradition found in the Talmud, this passage must be seen in a larger context. After all, this verse (and those before it) describes what will happen on “the day of the Lord” (Isaiah 2:12). Our passage, then, discusses how a person should behave over the course of daily life. It tells us how to act from when we get up in the morning to when we go to sleep at night.
Specifically, our passage means to say that every day, right when we get up out of bed, we should remember to thank God for all that He has given us and to acknowledge Him as the Master of the Universe. And when Isaiah tells us to “stay away from man,” he means that before greeting his fellow man each morning he should first, so to speak, say “good morning!” to God.
Isaiah’s lesson to us is all about prioritizing correctly. What do we value in our daily lives? We want to make a living. We want to have a peaceful life. We want to enjoy ourselves in our free time. All of these are important, of course, but when we make a list of things that are important to us, do we think of our relationship with our Creator? Do we remember that we have a responsibility to honor God by setting a good example for others through our words and actions?
Isaiah is reminding us that we need to make service to God our first priority. We need to remember that acknowledging God “up there” will lead to a better life for us down here. Once we get our priorities straight, we’ll find that we can better enjoy the world around us.
And as the ancient Jewish tradition says, it all starts with saying “good morning!” to God!