Scripture: Isaiah 40:26-31
The promise: “But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
Observation: Isaiah speaks of God’s great power and strength, reminding us that God will never grow weak or weary. We can turn to God in our weakness, and he will strengthen us. Just as an eagle protects her young, God protects those who fully trust in him.
Application: In our tired, stressed-out, busy lives, we’re constantly looking for new things to help strengthen us. We turn to supplements, protein drinks, and new workout regimens. We invest in energy drinks and pills. We look to people and experiences. We often look everywhere except to the one who can truly strengthen us – the Lord, “the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth.” (verse 28)
While the promise here is that God will be our “new strength,” there’s an essential precursor: We must trust in the Lord.
Oh, how we desire to! In the deepest part of our souls, we know that trusting in the Lord will bring us the peace and hope we crave – yet we struggle with this submission because we’re human, and we get in our own way. Trusting God – or anyone – isn’t a single act; it’s a lifelong journey of submitting, believing, and letting go, again and again and again.
And if we’re honest, for many of us in church world, “trust in the Lord” has too often become white noise, the solution emotionlessly hurled at us as we reveal deep hurt or issues in our lives to someone else who doesn’t really care to listen to us. We hear it constantly – at church, during conversations with friends. We see it everywhere – stamped on coffee mugs and stenciled on living room walls. We’re told trusting in the Lord will fix everything, but we’re not told how gut-wrenchingly difficult it can be, how it requires us to offer ourselves to him every single day, how we must let go of so much so we can receive so much more.
So we’re fully aware we need to trust in the Lord, but here we are: still tired, still weak, still weary.
“But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.” (verse 31)
God doesn’t want to just give us strength to face our lives; he wants to give us new strength, something we’ve never experienced before, something we can’t find anywhere else. He’s waiting for us to unlock his power and strength inside ourselves – we simply have to trust him more than ourselves.
This trust requires us to lay down our own desires, our comfort, and our ideas. This trust asks us to recognize that his plans are infinitely better than ours. This trust prods us to let go, to open up our hands and our hearts, to trade in our comfort and control.
Trusting in the Lord comes down to this: What do I desire more than I desire God?
Whatever you desire more than you desire God is what stands between you and fully trusting in him. It’s what stands between you and the new strength he promises.
When you fully trust in the Lord, he will protect you and provide for you, allow you to soar on his safe wings. He will allow you to run the race of life and never grow weary or faint. When you give up your own desires, he gives you so much more.
So, search your heart today. Ask him to reveal the desires that separate you from receiving everything he has in store for you. And, then allow him to fill you with new strength to face your everydays.
Prayer: God, I praise you for filling me with new strength, for caring about me so deeply. Help me search my heart today. What do I desire more than I desire you? I pray I can lay every one of those desires down. Amen.
Digging Deeper: Take a few minutes to memorize today's focus verse. Write it on a sticky note to put on your car dashboard or mirror, set it as the lock screen on your phone, say it aloud a few times throughout the day -- whatever will help make it stick.