This week’s Thought is written by Sharon Healy.
I will whistle for them and gather them in, for I have redeemed them. (Zechariah 10:8)
Before I was a Christian, I worked as a waitress. One evening as I was running from table to table, I heard a whistle. Two men were waving and whistling for me to come and take their order. They were from America, so I told them we didn’t whistle like that here but had to wait our turn like everyone else. They just laughed at me!! Also, we had a neighbour who used a whistle to call her children. No matter where they were or what they were doing, when they heard the whistle, they dropped everything to run home to their mother. I don’t know to this day if that was a good or a bad thing, they didn’t seem bothered, but I felt sorry for the girls. Whistling can be used in a derogatory or disrespectful way.
However, years later there was a whistle I heard, a new tune on a new flute, it was the most attractive call I had ever heard. It was the voice of the Lord Jesus saying, ‘Come follow Me’. There was no harshness in this call to serve and I’m glad I answered the call to serve the kindest, most wonderful One I have ever known.
Isaiah 5:26 says:
He will lift up an ensign to the nations from far and will whistle to them (hiss unto them) from the end of the earth; surely they shall come with speed, swiftly.
Barnes’ notes on the Bible from biblehub.com explains, “The term ‘will hiss unto them’ - means he would "collect" them together to accomplish his purposes. The expression is probably taken from the manner in which bees were hived. In Syria and Palestine, they who kept bees were able to draw them out of their hives, and conduct them into fields, and bring them back again, by whistling with the sound of a flute or the noise of hissing…the ancients also had this idea respecting bees.”
I will whistle for them and gather them in, for I have redeemed them… (Zechariah 10:8)
See the kindness and love of God in sending his only son Jesus to call us away form the world and sin, to be redeemed and be part of His family. We should be ready and open ourselves to the voice and call of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit and do what He asks, go where He says, and be available to move at a moment’s notice.
Corrie ten Boom was imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp for helping the Jewish people. She had become accustomed to the harsh whistle calls in the camp. The Nazi’s blew a whistle to summon prisoners into the camp. Prisoners were awakened by whistles at 4am for roll call to stand in the cold for hours; some did not survive this daily ordeal.
But there is no such harshness in God’s whistle. It’s not a one-off call and, as we become attuned to His whistle, His voice, He will lead us forward.
When she walked free from the concentration camp, Corrie heard God saying to her:
I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which you should go, I will guide thee with mine eye.’ (Psalm 32:8)
She had only a suitcase of old clothes and a Bible to her name. But Corrie had heard the ‘whistle’ of God many years before and had already a deep relationship with Jesus. The Lord’s whistle was gentle and stronger than any enemy whistle. God remained faithful to His word and led Corrie all the days of her life.
God has no favourites. Listen for his voice, become attuned to his whistle and when we hear Jesus say ‘Come, follow me’, be ready to go. No one has ever regretted it.
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