February 13th, 2021 – Friday Night/Very Early Saturday Morning
“Yet those who wait for the LORD
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary.” ~Isaiah 40:31
This passage is a popular one and often ornaments a majestic picture, one perhaps of an eagle soaring on the wind. We might have a wide range of emotions and ideas related to what this verse means to us or to our situation and we may hold dearly to those ideas. Obviously there is great promise within this verse for those who wait on the LORD, yet, has this passage become so commonplace or simple to us that we overlook the profound truth and awe found within it?
The Hebrew word that is translated “wait” in this passage entails the basic concept of waiting for something or someone, but it also carries a sense of purpose and expectancy. You might think of waiting as a boring and arduous task that is a normal part of going shopping with your spouse or as a necessary evil in the course of life, but this word has so much more; to wait involves eagerness, intentionality, and intense desire. The same word is used in the context of lying in wait for an enemy or threat; it isn’t a passive, boring time period, but an active and focused attitude.
Putting this back into the context of today’s passage, to wait on the LORD is to linger for and to look eagerly for Him. I believe it requires a quieting of our souls and bodies in order to pour out our hearts before Him and to be patient for His response. It is an active process that denotes stillness and it may be a waiting period of moments, hours, days, weeks, months, or years (and it involves continued, perhaps constant, petition to the LORD). Yet, how refreshing and awesome is the result! Instead of floundering with a difficult decision or problem, those who wait on Him find wisdom, strength, encouragement, grace, and so much more!
Oh the goodness and faithfulness of God! I can testify again and again that His Word is true and that He does indeed respond to those who wait on Him (and I know that I am not alone in testifying of these things!). When I try to do things in my own strength or wisdom, I can’t; yet, when I go to Him and I wait for Him, He gives wisdom, grace, and strength for whatever situation or conversation I find myself in (even in using this verse and writing this email tonight). How about you? Are you learning to depend on Him? Have you found His wisdom, strength, and grace to be sufficient? Is His Spirit empowering you to do His will?
Wait on the LORD; eagerly seek Him and patiently linger for His work and guidance. He is still the God who gives new life, new mercies, and new strength!