Are you tired today? Are you weary? Is there even just one area of your life in which you are struggling to “not become weary in doing good” (Galatians 6:9)?
Perhaps its time for a Strength Exchange
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
Exchange Your Strength
The word “renew” in verse 31 literally means to “change” or “exchange.” When we properly wait upon the Lord, we are putting our hope, trust, confidence in Him. In doing so, we exchange our strength for His.
This strength exchange is how we can keep on keeping on, even in the most difficult of times.
Bounded Weariness; Boundless Strength
God marked my life with a season- a season that reminds me that when I put my confidence in God (when I “wait for the Lord” vs 31) rather than in myself, I can make it through anything.
I had come to the end of myself as I burnt through the final layer of strength I had at the end of my Junior year of college. It was my 3rd year of insomnia, 3rd year of adrenal fatigue (which I wouldn’t even be able to put a name to until a couple years later; a couple years more of it). I was running on smoke.
I absolutely loved learning, and being at Moody Bible Institute, I had fountains of wisdom and knowledge all around me, and I wanted to soak up all I could from them in the little time I had with them. So, I took a lot of classes. Every semester. Those I could not take, I audited.
And there were needs. All around me. In downtown Chicago, the city bleeds before your eyes. So, on top of my required ministry, I did as much else as I could and invested in a number of other pressing needs that weighed on my heart.
And I loved someone. Really my first love. He reveled in His love for God, and it was so attractive. And our relationship ended.
And then there was my injury. I had sprained my ankle 2 miles downhill into a trail on a trip with friends. With one on either side, I had to swing my way uphill out of that trail. I think it put a strain on my back, because a few months later I injured it and couldn’t sit. It recovered and a few months after that, I injured it again.
No problem; I’ve got this. I’ve been here before. But, then- I didn’t. I went ahead and went to Big Brother Big Sister camp with my little sister and quickly found I was unable to walk, let alone run- which is what I really needed to do to keep up with her. I came back from camp at the end of my junior year, when I needed to write papers and take tests and pack up my room- and I couldn’t walk or sit.
God taught me a lot through needing to depend on others and through things not getting better right away- more than I can write about here. After friends lending me laptops to write papers, my parents packing me up to bring me home, an x-ray to prove it was a muscular issue/not skeletal, and a couple of weeks of rest, I found myself on a plane to California and then China for my required internship to complete my degree.
The training in California was like a pep rally for my summer teaching English as a Second Language in China. I felt very, very old and completely disconnected from the energy and enthusiasm that emanated from that place, and I recoiled.
In desperation, I called my best friend’s mom- a mom to me- who had led many missions trips I’d been on that were extremely physically taxing. She had struggled with health issues, but had made it through those summers. How had she done it? By depending on God- not day by day, not even hour by hour, but moment by moment, second by second.
Confident in God
She had exchanged her strength for God’s every moment. And that is what God taught me to do that summer. And He impressed on my heart that- no matter how hard life is, no matter how much is going on in it, I can rest when my confidence is in Him and not myself.
I need to remember this again. As I find myself entering another season of that familiar gnawing, edgy fatigue. What about you? How have you seen God come through for you when you needed His strength the most? Please encourage us with your story in the comments below.
My desire is that through this blog, you will be inspired to:
- engage deeply with the Lord and those you care about
- embrace wholly, bringing your whole self to the table to connect with others, and
- delight lavishly, celebrating the consequential and minutia of life.
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