As we pursue our dreams, build our ministries or climb the career ladder, it is so easy to run ahead of God. We strive, push, struggle – and burn out. Isaiah 40:31 tells us, that if we wait on God, he will renew our strength. This means, that if we wait for God’s perfect timing and if we allow God to renew our strength at the place of intimacy with him – we will not suffer burn out.
“Those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up on wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31, NKJV)
The pursuit of happiness
Aren’t we all familiar with these situations: waiting for God to intervene while he seems to be busy elsewhere, not even listening to us.
Our most natural response is to work things out ourselves. We want what we want, the way we want, when we want (meaning now!).
So we start planning, taking action, forcing our way through and trying to lay hold of… what actually?
- Our career – the job we always dreamed of, the pay we need to secure us the standard of living we desire.
- Marriage – Mr or Mrs Right has still not shown up despite our diligent prayers and us reading all dating and marriage books the Christian book shops have on offer.
- Our status – we want to be accepted and respected, at work, in church, in society or elsewhere.
It’s the pursuit of happiness – we’re desperate to live “the dream”.
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We are control-freaks
Although we know, we should take everything to the Lord in prayer, we cannot stand unanswered prayer for too long. And since we like being in control, we take matters into our own hands.
Yes, if God has planted a dream inside of us, we should work towards it. We should set goals, acquire skills and prepare ourselves for our breakthrough – but it is essential that we wait for God’s timing.
And this is the problem: we just don’t want to wait for God’s perfect time. Maybe we give it a religious labelling (“I’m stepping out in faith”); while really we are fed up waiting so we try to push God to start moving.
The result is striving, working and wearing ourselves out.
Worse even, we might leave some scorched earth behind us on our path to success. Colleagues kicked out of the way, neglected families, estranged friends. While eventually we might get what we want, will it be worth the cost?
Soaring like eagles – effortlessly
God promises if we wait on Him, we will renew our strength. There will be no need to strive. We will rise up – not by climbing the tiresome mountains in our lives, but as on wings of an eagle, spreading out our wings, soaring.
No hurt, now exhaustion, no “collateral damage” on the way. God will bring to pass what he has promised us.
Be sure to also read:
- Strength in the secret place (Isaiah 40:31 – pt 2)
- Four steps to get ready for your breakthrough
- Facing challenges: Let God take your side
- Always pray, don’t give up. The importance of persistent prayer