You are Beloved

Are you here for the He Calls Me Loved Bible Study? You’re in the right place! Welcome!

What is this Bible study you talk of, you ask? Grab a cup of your favorite hot beverage, sit back, and join us for 10 minutes out of your day. You’ll find out He Calls You Loved too.

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Day 1 – You are Beloved, Isaiah and hard truths

Most of you reading this understand that the Bible is no ordinary book. It’s quite amazing really. Bible verses describe it as living and active. It breathes life and salvation into a person. It moves in our lives every time we open it. Sometimes the message of eternity is so big, that we forget that eternity and the message are for today. When we open the Bible, we can be assured that God has planned, from the creation of time, what we each need to hear for this particular day.

How is this even possible?! How does God take words, written in a book like Isaiah – a story of and a message for a people so long ago – and make it profoundly meaningful for each one of us, walking around in the twenty first century?

To that my short answer is – sit back and wonder for a moment, sisters – He is God.

This is who He is and what He does:

Father

Creator

Mighty

Lord

Savior

Redeemer

Listener

Leader

Restorer

Helper

Seeker

Isaiah is a book all about this God of ours. The titles above are just the beginning, and He calls us to hear, to give ear, for even just a minute from our day –

Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth;
for the Lord has spoken…

Isaiah 1:2a

One day I sat down and read the entire book of Isaiah from cover to cover in one sitting. I drank my coffee and was enraptured in an instant. I heard the story of a God who is zealous for His people. A God who has high expectations and lots of plans. A God who loves me so much that He was stricken and afflicted for my sake. Isaiah isn’t just full of words about God, but words about who God is. It also shares God’s vision for who we are, both without Him, and how much better we are with Him. This is what God says about us in Isaiah….

We are loved.

We are children.

We are neighbors.

We are holy.

We are righteous.

We are led.

We are saved.

We are consecrated.

We are strong.

We are upheld.

We are clay.

We are heard.

We are ransomed.

We are delivered.

And this, my friends, is only one page. I have three more pages full to the brim and overflowing with titles and descriptions of our great God and His image, His forgiveness, reflected in a very much imperfect people. While we flip through the pages of Isaiah, we’ll sort out who He is related to my little life in this place and this time on earth. We’ll see how much God considers us in the big plan of eternity. As you turn your pages in the next eight weeks, may you begin to see how much God thinks of you.

We are never far outside His watch and His tender care.
Don’t get me wrong. Isaiah will be hard. There will be plenty of words in our study like

desolation

destruction

brokenness

blindness

deafness

forsaken

hated

and stubborn.

The imagery God utilizes through the prophet Isaiah is not sugar coated. It is a hard truth of our own wantonness, our wanderings, our lustfulness, our true and broken reality. But, oh, the beauty of where this brings us in our relationship with Him!

From broken to restored,

lustful to holy,

wandering to found,

forsaken to gathered.

This is love, sisters. A God who sends his only son to walk among us, who raises Him up to raise us up, both as a people and as individual children of the Most High God.

Exploration:

Today, as you prepare to study Beloved with us this week. Flip through the pages of your Bible. Turn to the book of Isaiah. Use the Beloved Scripture Engagement Tool below, or open to a blank page in your notebook and look for descriptions of life as the people of God. Take even just one chapter from Isaiah of your own choosing, and soak in it. Maybe find out more of the prophet Isaiah’s calling and experience with the Lord’s forgiveness in Isaiah 6.

Answer these two questions for me in whatever you read –

What does God have to say about Himself?

What does God have to say about you?

Comment below with what you read and your thoughts on the questions, or share simply in your heart between you and God.

I am beyond excited to study with you all.

You are Beloved.

BELOVED

Printable Beloved Scripture Engagement Tool

45 thoughts on “You are Beloved”

  1. In Isaiah chapter 1, God describes himself as a father (v. 2) who has reared & brought up his children. He calls himself the LORD of hosts (v. 9, 24), & he says he is tired of the Israelites religious acts that are just an outward show (v. 11-15). He also desires the salvation of His people ( v. 18). As to the Israelites, the people as a whole have fallen away from God, & have squandered His Word (v. 21). Although God provides forgiveness, there will be consequences for the nation as a whole (v. 24-31).
    Thanks for the study, Heidi!
    -Dana

  2. In Isaiah 6 I’m struck by his attitude before the coal touches his lips vs. after: “Woe is me…lost…unclean..” vs. “Here I am! Send me!” (Just like the eager student in grade school) The pronouncement of absolution is empowering!

    1. Isn’t that interesting that the Grace of God (inviting Isaiah before Him) immediately changes Isaiah’s stance before Him. We each are invited to that throne of Grace. That’s a cool insight, Trina!

  3. “Do not fear for I have redeemed you;I have summoned you by name; you are mine” Isaiah 43:1

    My sister gave me this verse last year on my birthday. What it means to me- that even as her physical body was destroyed and broken God would redeem her spirit he would call her to heaven by her name. The name given to Her by her parents who held her as she left this physical world. That she belonged to God that she would be pulled into his arms fully healed from the heartache and despair of this world.

    1. She is so loved, by Him and by each of us, so much. Her faith is still such a testimony to us. His message in her continues! Heal our hearts, Lord, even as we know M is fully healed in your arms today. In Jesus.

  4. Isaiah 12

    In the notes of LSB it calls this chapter “The Joy of Deliverance” and I think it is a perfect description. God is the one who deliveres me from the eternal consequences of my sin. It is a gift – nothing I do adds or subtracts from this gift. Even on the worse of days, I can still rejoice in this gift.

    Following a tradition started by my late mother, I have “tiny treasures” sitting on shelves in my kitchen (the room I spend the vast majority of my time in.) I love looking at the souvenirs and gifts and recalling the happy times and people they represent. But I also have a growing collection of icons that remind me of the Best Gift. And those icons lift me up during the good and bad days. (I wish I could post here the picture I sent my best friend last May when workers were cutting into the kitchen ceiling of
    my new house to try to find the cause of the flood from the bathroom upstairs. I had “rescued” my expensive Japanese appliances from the countertop but had forgotten to take the crucifix icon off the wall. I had snapped the picture of the third hole being cut into the ceiling and wept when I saw the cross behind the worker. It was a beautiful reminder of God’s presence in my life.)

  5. I read Isaiah 4. God describes Himself as ordinary things– branches. fire. canopy. But He’s using all these ordinary things for extra-ordinary purposes. Just like He’ll use us. 🙂

    1. It’s really cool how God knows the way we can receive information. Those common descriptions are so helpful for our understanding. Thanks for pointing this out!

  6. I followed your suggestion and started with chapter 6.
    God tells me He is: Holy, Almighty and the earth is full of His glory!!
    God tells me: I am unclean, yet my guilt has been taken away and my sin has been atoned for!

    Here I am Lord!! I am your created miracle, so beloved… Your most precious Son took my place on the cross, use me to….

    Lord, I thank You for creating Heidi and crossing our paths so many years ago. She is Your servant and has always been a joyful gift to my heart and soul! Amen.

    1. You are a gift to me as well, Darlene! Isn’t it amazing that so many years ago He acknowledges our sin and promises His son. He is so consistent, even when the world claims He is not.

  7. I read 6, 7, and 8.

    I love that even as He is telling Isaiah of the trials the Israelites are about to experience that he promises they will not be completely destroyed, and even better He promises a savior.

    In chapter 8, the Lord instructs us to fear Him and not this world, yet also says to wait on Him and that in Him we have hope. He even says He will be our sanctuary even as He is a stumbling block to others.

  8. Isaiah 6

    What does God say about himself?

    He sits on a throne-high and lifted up.
    He is Holy
    The whole earth is full of his glory
    The foundations shake at the sound of his voice.
    While he punishes evil and flings it far from himself he leaves a holy stump to redeem us.

    What does God say about me?
    I am lost
    I have unclean lips
    I dwell amongst people with unclean lips
    He takes my guilt away
    He atones for my sin
    He sends me
    He has a purpose for me.

    1. There are so many good insights here, we could have another whole study. It’s so interesting to contemplate myself as one with unclean lips but also living among people of unclean lips. We are so in need of His forgiveness! Praise the Lord He freely offers it!

  9. I read chapter 6. I am necessarily struck by God as Holy and King and me as lost without him. I am drawn to the physical image of the hot coals touching his lips. It is so easy to explain away my faults and forget that I am wholly sinful in front of a Holy God, and I need that physical act of Jesus’ saving me.

  10. I started with chapter 1 and read through chapter 7. Something that struck me is how often I read, “the LORD has spoken” (1.2); “Hear the word of the LORD…give ear…” (1.10); “…says the LORD… ” (1.18); “the mouth of the LORD has spoken” (1.20); “Therefore the LORD says…” 1.24; “…the word of the LORD [shall go forth] from Jerusalem” (2.3); “…says the LORD GOD of hosts.” (3.15); “Moreover the LORD says…” (3.15); “…please let Me tell you what I will do…” (5.5); “In my hearing the LORD of hosts said…” (5.9); …[woe to those who] “despised the word of the Holy One of Israel” (5.24); “I heard the voice of the LORD saying…” (6.8); “…and He said…” (6.9); “And He answered…” (6.11)

    The LORD speaks to us! He reveals to us Himself and His plans. He wants us to know Him and His will for us. He is not a God who is far off and unknowable. As I finished my session this afternoon, I wrote myself a note: “What must we see, hear, experience to take seriously His Word — both the warning and the promise of restoration and blessing?” Argh!

    1. Oooo- that’s so good! What a fresh insight! He is speaking to us. He’s always ready for us to hear. Spirit, ready our hearts always!

    2. I love this!! Our pastor once used the word “consume” when speaking of Scripture and it really struck me! Yes, we need to study and contemplate, but there is also value in just reading/listening to the Word and letting it fill us without any “extra” on our part. If that makes sense… I think sometimes God just wants us to listen.

      1. Amen! I agree. The day I read Isaiah cover to cover I felt so filled up. I knew the Truth that God drew me close to Him, and I hadn’t even opened my mouth in prayer. He did all the work.

  11. PS – The December devotions in Portals of Prayer are based on passages from Isaiah. Because of this study, my husband and I are going out of order and reading December now. Wanted to share that in case it’s something others of you may want to do. Blessings!

    1. Great idea, Jan! I’ll check it out and share around social media too, to get the word out (and the Word out)! Thanks for letting us know.

  12. For the first question… Isaiah 1 seems to remind me of the children of Israel and how God keeps reminding them of where he rescued them from and yet they still rebel.
    Second…. We are still his children and he won’t forsake us. That is truly a wonderful thing and we should cherish that/be reminded of this daily.
    Seems first chapter has more of bad feeling than good but I did read Isaiah isn’t an easy sugar coated book. Glad to be part of this study thanks to Elisabeth Tessone!!!!

    1. He will never leave us or forsake us- awesome. I agree that Chapter 1 can be the really down. We’ll be up and down a lot in the study. Hanging on to His Truth, both Law and Gospel! Glad you’re joining us. Thankful for Elisabeth’s leadership!

  13. Isaiah 42

    God…our creator, our life giver, all glory and praise belongs to Him. He will take my hand and hold me up when I need encouragement. He wants me to also be a covenant, a light to those around me.

    1. I am struck by how often God reminds us that He is Creator and Maker. Keep looking for it. There’s definitely a thread there! Very encouraging!

  14. dross
    drôs,dräs/Submit
    noun
    something regarded as worthless; rubbish

    After spending time in Europe, how many “treasures” that I surround myself with are “dross”… yes, I had to look up that word. Even so, God claims me not as dross, but as HIS. I am His, so says HE in Vs 43:1, and for that I am thankful.

  15. I randomly opened the book of Isaiah, and it fell on chapter 57–
    Seems that God is angry, at those who follow and trust in other Gods, yet He is merciful in the end to man, His creation, and offers healing, peace and reconciliation with those who turn back.

    This is our story, we forget what Christ has done for us, but when we remember and return to Him, He is there to offer forgiveness, and renewal, and with that comes peace.

    1. The back and forth is ever present in Isaiah. I appreciate that you recognize each of us in it. “This is our story…” Beautiful!

  16. I read Isaiah Chapter 6 and it is short, but so full of awesome. God tells us that: He is powerful, always ready to speak, full of love for His people, and has a plan for us. He shows us that we are: Not always ready for our jobs, need a little bit of prompting to get started, and so so loved by Him. I know that I struggle with the attitude to say “Here am I! Send me!” in all of life’s situations. I get bogged down, but I have to remember that He is not sending me on my own. He is going with me AND He sent His Son to save me. I think that’s really awesome.

  17. Had to start with 1 & 2. The pattern is established. We rebel, sin, become estranged, forsake even despise God. Then we make ritualistic sacrifices that he cannot endure. All God wants us to do is Hear, Listen, cease doing evil, do good, seek justice for the oppressed. He wants us to turn to him so we can learn from him and walk in his ways.

    Today @ Target I saw kids t-shirts proclaiming kindness. Nothing wrong with that message. But how can we proclaim kindness with out Christ? Without Christ kindness is just an act or idea with out substance. The first time one encounters rejection while being kind will result in the abandoning of kindness. This is like what we do to God. Superficiality is something God despises. He wants us to repent and turn to him. We can’t walk in his ways without him. Sorry if I have gone to far off topic!

    1. No, good thoughts! It’s true. Many Bibles translate grace as kindness. But isn’t grace so much better? Let’s fill the world with kindness, but more importantly, with grace. This is how they will know Him.

  18. I read Isaiah 43 and the first thing that grabs me is FEAR NOT! That alone is constant encouragement.
    In this one chapter alone there area so many words for God and me. I’ll list just a few. God is with us, gatherer, He is Lord–there is no other, redeemer, creator, King. Words about us–redeemed, called, He knowas us by name, we are precious.
    So thankful for this study.

  19. I am starting a bit late, but will catch up!

    When you lists the contrasting conditions, it brought to mind a recent song on the radio with a chorus that ends “You [we] see wounded, I [God] sees mended.” Mended carried that idea of being restored…restored for further usefulness.

  20. Isaiah 6

    What He says about Himself – He is king, high & lifted up, holy, powerful, one who calls

    What He says about me – glorious since the whole earth is full of His glory? Unclean, guilt taken away and sin paid for, commissioned, remnant

  21. I read Isaiah 6. My favorite verses were verses 5-9-it is so comforting to have a Savior who forgives us and has a purpose for us.

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