As I have been reading through and studying the scriptures this week for the Cultivating a Heart of Prayer study, one passage really hit home with me – Isaiah 40:28-31.
Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (NIV)
There is so much in this short passage, but I would like to focus on two aspects – strength and waiting.
Strength – I will admit that I have seen and read this passage several times, but after starting a new exercise program this week, “run and not grow weary” took on a whole new meaning. But you and I don’t need to be involved in a workout program to become tired and weary.
It seems like most people in the world today are tired. A good portion of this fatigue comes from simply being too busy and trying to do everything in our own strength. This passage tells us “even youths grow tired and weary”. Our human strength, even at is best, was not created to handle things on our own. We were created to turn to God for our source of strength and help. God’s strength and power never diminishes. He is never too tired or busy to listen to our cry for help and grant us the strength we need. Strength is a gift from God. He will give us the energy we need to do the things He has called us to do, but we must turn to Him and plug into His power.
However, this strength isn’t just given out to anyone and everyone like some magic genie granting our endless requests. There is a condition listed in the passage.
Wait/Hope – I love the word “wait” that is used in the Amplified Version in place of “hope” in verse 31. At least for me, the word “hope” is more of an idea than something concrete, unlike the word “wait”. I am very familiar with this word. Many days it seems like waiting is all I do – waiting for the dryer to finish, waiting for the kids to get home, waiting for the practice to end, waiting for dinner to cook, waiting, waiting, and waiting.
I love the definition of the kind of waiting referred to in verse 31, “confident expectation and active hope in the Lord – never passive resignation.” You and I must keep in mind that there is nothing passive about waiting on God. The only way we can have our strength renewed is to wait on God, but what does that look like.
Waiting on God is simply spending quality time with Him in prayer, worship and reading the Word. We come into His presence and rest. This quality time will do more to restore our minds and bodies than anything else we can do. This time of rest and rejuvenation will enable God to help us rise above the difficulties and distractions of life.
I cannot begin to wrap my mind around the ways of God, but I know that I can trust His promises. Therefore, if I put my trust in Him, if I wait and hope in Him, God will renew my strength and I will be able to do what He is calling me to do.
I encourage you to take some time this weekend and just rest in God. Spend some quality time with Him and let Him renew your strength.
I would love for you to share how you rest in God in the comment section today.