As Isaiah describes for us the leveling of ground, he is referring to an old custom of preparing the way for a king to come into a city or village. The citizens would prepare the way by making the path or road more level. In this they show their devotion to their long so that he doesn’t have a bumpy ride on his way to town. Isaiah then bumps the image up a bit, instead of filling up potholes, they are filling up valleys. Instead of leveling dirt mounds, they are leveling mountains. Why? Because someone greater than any king is coming. This is the Lord!
Such a One arrived in Jerusalem 2000 years ago. He rode into town riding an donkey’s colt that had never been ridden before. People laid down their palm branches and their clothes before the colt, reducing the dust and improving the ride. The mountains and valleys were leveled in the heart, or they would have been, since many of the same voice shouting Hosanna! Also shouted Crucify Him! Just a few days later. Ironically the Romans filed in the valleys so to speak just a few years later in AD 72-3 when they built a ramp up to Masada, the last hold-out of Jewish revolutionaries who defied the authority of Caesar (remember, “we have no King but Caesar!”?) .
When looking at this verse, what kinds of things stand in the way between you and the Lord? What mountains of life’s pleasures and idolatries need to be leveled before you can see Him clearly? What valleys of despair and brokenness need to be filled with peace and God’s love before He can cross them to come to you?
Lord, help is clear the road for Your presence in us. There is a time coming when we will meet You face to face. Should there be anything in our lives that prevents us from seeing You clearly, may we gradually move the earth that makes Your path easier. Thank You Lord for loving me enough to make Your way into me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.