christian sisters and brothers are inspired to walk by faith, trust god, live freely, and laugh a little along the way.
Renew – verb. To resume after an interruption.
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength... - Isaiah 40:31
I have a hard time identifying my favorite scripture, because I LOVE so many. It’s like asking, which is my favorite: strawberry cheesecake or cherry cheesecake? Ummm, they’re both cheesecake...they're both equally delicious...this is not rocket science people! Making me choose a favorite is not only ridiculous, but simply unjust, down right unheard of.
With that said, I LOVE Isaiah 40:31, it is ONE of my favorite scriptures, among a collection of others. Here's why.
Over the last several months, I went through a period of feeling unusually tired. No energy. No motivation, just blah. I fell into a bad state of complacency and I was struggling; struggling to do the bare necessities.
My fridge and sadly to say, my baby girl, were crying out for a grocery store run, the cupboards were bare, my car was dirty (inside and out), my bedroom was a mess; looked like the closet exploded. I had totally forgotten how to use a hanger or dresser drawer for that matter – clothes everywhere.
I had no umphh, and I lost the emotion to even care about it. Naturally, I was going through some tired unmotivated stuff, but it was deeper than that. Spiritually I wasn’t well. I was depleted and needed a refill. I was weak. I needed to be renewed.
I had gotten to a brick wall and hit it, every. single. day. I knew I needed to shop and put food in the house, I knew things around me were a mess. I knew I was behind, in more areas than one. At work, I’d sit at my desk and imagine myself taking care of everything once I got off. But when that time came around, I went home and everything that I imagined myself doing, was just that, a figment of my imagination. I did nothing. Absolutely nothing.
I wasn’t praying like I ought, or doing much studying, either. Ehh...I’d get to it, or get my dose in bible study or Sunday morning worship service. I wanted to, but did I really? My spirit was suffering.
I needed to be renewed.
I needed a refresh.
I had to check myself.
Houston, I had a problem.
I was going from day to day completely weak. It was a façade. My flesh appeared to be moving and shaking, and getting stuff done, but I was not. And to make it worse, I eventually left my poor, feeble, spirit behind to fend for itself in the land of no prayer.
I was too distracted doing nothing to see that my spirit was crying out, trying to get my attention, I mean wildly waving, jumping and swinging its arms back and forth, “Hey! You forgot about me! I’m back here! Please, come back. I'm weak. I can't catch up.” I needed to wait.
Do not pass go.
Do not collect $100.
What did waiting mean and how was my spirit supposed to catch up if I wasn't doing anything to help? What did waiting look like? Keep going day to day like I had been doing, as if nothing was wrong? I dunno? What was I supposed to do to get out of this funk?
Now enters, Isaiah 40:31, first clause only.
Three words from this one clause from Isaiah’s scripture spoke volumes to my situation by giving me very basic instructions, that helped my very soul.
"But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength..." - Isaiah 40:31
Here it is, in its three kickbutt pieces.
#1 Your but makes a difference. Verse 31 begins with a big fat but! It is used here as a conjunction, to introduce something contrasting with what has already been mentioned (a little Grammar 101). Check out Isaiah 40:30 to find out what that is in the scripture, but pertaining to our life, it can be a slew of things. For myself, it was being in a funk. I was discouraged and frustrated with certain areas in my life, which lead me to become an unmotivated, unconcerned mess. With puppy dog eyes, my daughter was like,
Then with my puppy dog eyes, I was like,
Then I'd end it with, "but I'll go tomorrow." There were like 15 tomorrows, before tomorrow actually resulted in a grocery store visit. Don't get me wrong, there was enough food in the house, plus she worked at Burger King, so the kid was eating.
I was dealing with something that was contrary to the word of God and His plan for my life. I should have used my but in a more positive way. I should have been saying, "I am discouraged and weak. I can’t seem to move forward and I don’t even know why or how I got here...BUT they that wait upon the Lord, shall renew their strength!"
See the conjunction in use. The but is the beginning to the contradiction of the statement that proceeds it (discouraged, weak...). It confidently introduces a new mode of action, an action to wait on the Lord for renewed strength. Despite of the current feeling, I am confident that if I do this, my situation will change. If I, "but wait", my spirit will be renewed. My spirit will resume after a brief interruption that took my focus for a little while.
#2 There is a waiting period before being renewed. Waiting is thee hardest thing ever! Ughh, not my favorite thing to do. Except, I can wait for the weekend to end. I am never in a rush to a Monday morning.
To receive what I needed, I had to wait on the Lord. I had to show Him that I was waiting on Him and not waiting on myself to magically feel better on my own. I had to stop going in my own way, because that was literally getting me no where. I made up in my mind that I was going to be still and wait on God. While I waited I prayed at the level I could. If only a few words to God in the car or standing in the shower, I needed to get the communication going because it had shut down on my end. My strength was zapped, and He knew it, but God met me where I was and honored my worship. My flesh was weak, but my spirit was willing. I began to feel differently within myself.
#3 Being renewed is contingent upon your actions. Scripture says, “...shall renew their strength.” Science believes that a cat's purr has self healing efficacy. The range a cat's purr reaches has the ability to mend its own broken bones. My renewal was heavily weighed on my own actions to heal me.
During the wait, I found a song to help in being renewed. I love how the Lord will give you a song to bring you through a tough time. I would listen to my song at work, blast it at home and in the car. I would hum it, and like a cat, it began to heal my brokenness. Before I knew it, my spirit caught up and was no longer lagging behind. I began to rise early in the morning to pray and have devotion with my lover who I had neglected without cause.
And just like that, my strength was renewed! I felt it! I knew it! I was connected to Jesus again and everything started to be right around me. I went grocery shopping after work and filled the fridge and made a homemade meal. I got my room in order and made it a clean and comfortable space. My car...well that’s another story. I really don’t think that was tied to this, because weak or strong, I have a hard time keeping my car spic and span. I believe God is preparing me a husband who will love to keep my car clean and detailed. So, I'll wait on that. wink. wink.
Life is tiring. Parenting is tiring. Being a friend can be tiring. Loving despite of, can be tiring. Smiling can be tiring. Trusting God’s process can be tiring. Serving God can be tiring. Yes, it can. Doesn’t mean stop serving God or His people, it simply means there are times when being a servant becomes wearisome and a refresh is needed.
Life as we know it can get to a point where everything seems to zap strength and mental pysche. In those moments, remember to have a "but, wait" in your spirit. Contradict what you see and feel with what God is going to do. Then, wait - the hardest part, I know. However, your strength will begin to be renewed right there, waiting and praying. Remain positive and know that you have the power within yourself to heal and renew you. Find a song, read a book, quote a scripture to help carry you through. Don't be dismayed. You will renew. You will resume after an interruption. God will show up and He will mount you on wings as eagles.
Hey, I'm Carica
and I like movies and long walks in the park...wait, wrong profile! I'm a single mama, walking by faith, loving Jesus and the chick he has matured me to be. I trust God with my life, and use this space to encourage my sistas and brothers to do the same. C'mon...get to know me!