Awake, awake, Zion, clothe yourself with strength!
Put on your garments of splendor, Jerusalem, the holy city.
The uncircumcised and defiled will not enter you again.
Shake off your dust; rise up, sit enthroned, Jerusalem.
Free yourself from the chains on your neck, Daughter Zion, now a captive.
For this is what the Lord says: “You were sold for nothing, and without money you will be redeemed.”
It’s morning – a brand new day. Maybe you wake up energized for the tasks ahead, or perhaps you groan to get out of bed, because you aren’t ready to meet the day’s challenges. But wait – God is ready. God has garments of strength for you from the strength of God’s word. Put them on. God is waiting for you to wear this clothing of strength and splendor.
Something changes when we decide to put on God’s clothing, what Paul calls the whole armor of God in Ephesians chapter 6. Putting on God’s clothing is to decide to act with faith and make full use of the resources God has for us. God will give us the power to do what needs to be done. By faith we work out of God’s strength; by faith we respond to God’s word by shaking off the dust of the past and doing what is right.
The people of Israel were taken into captivity – they were sold for nothing. The prophet says that they will be redeemed without money. We too have allowed ourselves to be sold into a kind of slavery – putting up with wrongdoing, being content with partial good, living for the wrong things. Yet we are redeemed – redeemed by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. He took our wrongs and we are forgiven by grace.
Thank you, Lord, for the gifts of grace and strength and purpose and vision, for calling us to service and giving us the means to serve you well. Shake us awake and clothe us with your strength so we can do what you ask us to do. Guide us in Jesus Christ, to the glory of your name. Amen.