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 NLT).
Friend to Friend
I left the Zoom meeting and raced out of the house hoping to stop at Target to pick up a gift to bring to my lunch appointment. As I sped into the store, I got a call from my caseworker. She wanted to discuss some concerns regarding our foster son. I talked with her while quickly getting what I needed and driving downtown. My mind was still processing all the issues with our teenage foster son as I found parking and realized the meter required me to download an app on my phone and enter payment information. Whatever happened to good old quarters in a meter?
I hurriedly completed the task, slammed the car door, and began walking to the restaurant. Then it hit me, I forgot to grab a mask. This happened during the Covid 19 mask mandates, and I couldn’t enter the establishment without one. I groaned as I ran back to the car and then searched my pockets for my key. It wasn’t there. I peeked into my vehicle and saw it – sitting on the passenger seat. After my husband brought me a spare key, I arrived at our house exhausted physically, emotionally, and mentally. I’ll bet you’ve had days like this too.
In these situations, all I want is my favorite creature comforts—watching television, eating ice cream, changing into my pajamas and checking out for the rest of the day. God gave us comfort foods. Hobbies or books can distract us from our weariness. Talking to a good friend can provide consolation. The Lord can use these things to comfort us. Yet at other times, we comfort ourselves with methods of escape that aren’t necessarily healthy. There was an Old Testament prophet named Isaiah who addressed the need to turn from counterfeit comforts in order to receive God’s genuine comfort.
Isaiah revealed the Lord as a shepherd feeding and caring tenderly for His flock. Our God has the powerful arm to strike, (Isaiah 40:10) but He uses that same arm to carry His lambs (Isaiah 40:11). God’s message of comfort wasn’t only for those in Isaiah’s day. In the midst of these tender expressions is a reminder that God’s words aren’t like withering grass or fading flowers. These words of God last forever- they apply to us today!
Shepherds provide, protect, and sometimes carry their lambs. God has been my shepherd on frenetic days like the one I mentioned earlier, but also in seasons of grief, difficult circumstances, and spiritual fatigue. I remember weary seasons of parenting small children and tough ministry seasons when I felt betrayed by close friends. God longs to comfort us, but we must come to Him rather than seeking to comfort ourselves.
Isaiah used these questions to remind the nation of Israel of God’s character: “Have you never heard? Have you never understood?” (Isaiah 40:28) In essence he was saying, “Don’t you know who your God really is?” God is the everlasting Creator of the whole earth. He doesn’t get weary like we do, and the depths of His understanding can’t be measured.
Isaiah ends chapter 40 with these words, “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 NLT).
If we are trusting, waiting, and hoping in the Lord, our counterfeit comforts will lose their luster. Waiting on the Lord isn’t just sitting around doing nothing, it means living in a posture of hopeful expectation of His help. Isaiah makes a case that it isn’t duty but delight to trust God’s comfort. We don’t want to swat at our bad habits but rather enlarge our view of the Lord so that it deepens our belief. This is how we move from surface-level behavior modification to heart-level transformation.
When you have a weary day or season, I pray you will wait on the Lord to renew your strength. He knows all about long meetings, unexpected phone calls, keys locked in cars, and the more significant losses and frustrations that lead to your exhaustion. He calls you to wait on Him for the power and strength you will never find in your own striving.
Lord, You are the everlasting God, the Creator of heaven and earth. I’m so glad You never grow tired of my constant need for Your strength. I get frustrated and weary often, and I need You. Help me to remember how big You are – especially in my moments of fatigue when I think temporary distractions are the answer.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Now It’s Your Turn
As you consider your own weary seasons, how have you experienced God’s comfort?
More from the Girlfriends
Check out Melissa’s new Bible study titled Isaiah: Striving Less and Trusting God More for an in-depth study of the book of Isaiah.
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