One of my favorite scriptures is Isaiah 40:31 MSG, “But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, they run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind.” Through the years I have made this scripture about me: what I could do empowered by God and waiting in his presence. Recently I have been considering the entire chapter and have realized it‘s about the creator of all you can see or imagine. It’s about the amazing God we love and serve. It’s about his understanding and commitment to us.
Consider Isaiah 40:28-31MSG,
“Don’t you know anything? Haven’t you been listening? God doesn’t come and go. God lasts. He’s Creator of all you can see or imagine. He doesn’t get tired out, doesn’t pause to catch his breath. And he knows everything, inside and out. He energizes those who get tired, gives fresh strength to dropouts. For even young people tire and drop out, young folk in their prime stumble and fall. But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, They run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind. “
Often we liken our relationship with God to our relationship with other individuals. The ones who have been there for us for a season then moved on when there was an offense or when someone more interesting came along. But God is not like that – he lasts. In a “disposable world” God is eternal. He knows all, understands all, and never replaces relationships.
God never gets winded when he’s climbing life’s mountains with you. He is there with his climbing companions, his disciples, and he carries you when you get out of breath! There is no pause in his protection. He is strong enough for anything the world or Satan puts upon you.
God also shares his energy with you and encourages those of us who sometimes want to quit or “dropout”. His supply is there for the young, the middle age and the older members of the body of Christ. We all stumble and fall, and we all need a powerful Savior to pick us up.
So, what is our part in this partnership of renewal? We are to “wait” on “fresh strength”. As we wait, a word most people hate, God brings cleansing, healing, and new energy. He takes the burdens off our backs so we can walk easier, see better and cease worrying about what might happen.
There is a lot of difference between a “beast of burden’ like a mule or camel, and an eagle. An eagle drops earthly things, spreads his wings, and soars high above the earth. His perspective is broader, and he sees the whole picture from the beginning to the end.
Can you imagine running and not getting tired or walking and not ever slowing down? That’s the promise of this passage. It all about who God is, not who we are or what we can do.
The Hebrew root word for wait is “qawa”. It means “I wait, look for or hope with eager expectation”. Faith is often expressed in patient endurance confidently knowing that God will act. Waiting involves the very essence of a person’s soul. It means taking doubt, fear, anxiety and worry captive and not letting them dominate our soul. Waiting is an active adventure of enduring and having eager expectation and hope.
The beginning of this passage of scripture says, “Don’t you know anything? Haven’t you been listening?” As a parent I have consoled children and grandchildren who had temporarily forgotten the depth of my love and favor when they made a mistake. Recently, at Sunday lunch a grandchild dropped a plate full of food. Not only was there food everywhere but the beautiful plate shattered into a dozen pieces. Immediately, everyone started cleanup while the startled and tearful grandchild looked at the mess. I stopped everything, called the grandchild to me and said, “It’s okay, it was a mistake. You are so much more valuable to me than a plate and I have plenty of food. We will make you a new and better plate of food!” After a snuggly hug we began the new plate and continued the cleanup. I had reminded everyone that my love for my family doesn’t come and go. It lasts.
Enjoy the entire chapter of Isaiah 40 and remember it’s about the creator of the universe and his great love and power in your life!