There are different spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; and there are different ministries and the same Lord; and there are different activities but the same God who produces all of them in everyone.
1 Corinthians 12:4-6
In the year of King Uzziah’s death, I saw the Lord sitting on a high and exalted throne, the edges of his robe filling the temple. Winged creatures were stationed around him. Each had six wings: with two they veiled their faces, with two their feet, and with two they flew about. They shouted to each other, saying:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of heavenly forces! All the earth is filled with God’s glory!”
The doorframe shook at the sound of their shouting, and the house was filled with smoke.
I said, “Mourn for me; I’m ruined! I’m a man with unclean lips, and I live among a people with unclean lips. Yet I’ve seen the king, the Lord of heavenly forces!”
Then one of the winged creatures flew to me, holding a glowing coal that he had taken from the altar with tongs. He touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips. Your guilt has departed, and your sin is removed.”
Then I heard the Lord’s voice saying, “Whom should I send, and who will go for us?”
I said, “I’m here; send me.”
This passage from Isaiah is impossible to read matter-of-factly like we might some other familiar parts of the Bible. It’s totally weird and completely awesome. When I read these verses, I picture these angel statues at my old church whose wings it looked like were holding up the sanctuary ceiling. Except Isaiah tells of angels that have six wings instead of two. In his vision, God is magnificently robed and attended to by these six-winged angels who are shouting about God’s glory. When he sees this, Isaiah cries out that he has unclean lips and lives among people with unclean lips. He also cries out a statement of faith.
Isaiah shows us that when we see God, it might be totally weird and completely awesome. God is magnificent and different from us humans, and maybe even a little scary. We might want to run the other direction when God calls (I kind of think this might be my response to seeing what Isaiah did!), but Isaiah shows us that another response is possible.
O God, I pray that you might reveal yourself to me, and that when I see you I not respond in shock, but instead admit who I am, including my shortcomings, trusting that you love me and accept me anyway. When I am in your presence, help my heart to believe and my lips to proclaim that I know you are God and I love you back. And when you call, help me to answer like Isaiah: Here I am, send me! In your awesome name I pray, amen.
Whatever you do, whether in speech or action, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus and give thanks to God the Father through him.