Those Who Wait in the LORD…

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who wait in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:29-31).

Depleted….tired….weary….beaten down….spent….exhausted….

God’s word promises that “those who wait in the LORD renew their strength.”

In the NIV, our text reads, “those who hope in the LORD renew their strength.” I am not sure why the NIV translates the word “wait” with “hope”. The Hebrew is wait.

I don’t know about you but I could use some renewal. I long for God’s strength.

God tells us that the pathway to God’s renewal and strength is to wait in the LORD. So, what does it mean to wait in the LORD? What am I doing if I am waiting on the LORD?

Those who are waiting on the LORD are those who are intentional about seeking the LORD and his presence through prayer and his word. Waiting in the LORD doesn’t mean sitting idly. Those who wait in the LORD seek his presence. We enter into the presence of God through prayer and through God’s word.

  • Where is strength and renewal to be found? In the LORD.
  • How do we find strength and renewal in the LORD? By seeking his presence through prayer and his word.

When we seek the LORD and his presence through prayer and God’s word, it reorients our perspective from the problems in our world, to God. And, when we see God we are reminded of who God is so that we can remember who we are as God’s beloved. It is this reorientation, reminder, and remembrance that gives us his strength and renewal.

Tired? Weary? Depleted? Down and out?

Wait in the LORD. Seek him in prayer. Meditate on God’s word.

Christians, We Are the Only Bible Non-Christians Will Ever Read

“You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts” (2 Corinthians 3:2-3).

Matt and I were attending the Leadership Summit conference at Willow Creek Church in Chicago. There were around 14,000 leaders who packed out the worship center at Willow Creek. At every break, there was a mad dash for the restrooms on campus.

As soon as the talk was done, Matt and I went to the restroom. There was already a line that was around fifty men deep. I got done with my business and waited for Matt outside the restroom. But he was taking much longer so I went back in to make sure he was okay. When I walked in the restroom, I realized why Matt was taking such a long time. He was wiping down the excess water on the sinks and picking up trash that was around the trash bin.

So, I asked him, “Matt, what are you doing?”

And, I’ll never forget what he told me. He said, “I want to make sure that every place I show up, it’s better because Jesus shows up everywhere I am.”

Matt is like that. What you need to know is that Matt is a business guy. And he was schooling this pastor guy in what it means to shine Christ’s light.

The life you and I live either demonstrates the glory of Christ or it muddies Christ’s glory. Paul tells the Corinthians that they are walking Bibles, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God. Either they were demonstrating how amazing and awesome our God is through their lives, or they were making the reality of Christ terribly cloudy and muddied.

Friends, a non-Christian will never pick up a Bible on their own to seek Christ. But, they see you all the time. And either our lives will cause them to consider Christ or our lives will hamper their search for Christ.

Be like Matt. Matt makes me want to be a better Christ-follower. Make sure that every place you show up today is a better place because Jesus shows up wherever you are!

You Smell

“For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life” (2 Corinthians 2:15-16).

Whenever I visit my mom and dad, one of the reasons why I know I’m home is because of the aroma of my parent’s home. I’ve been in hundreds and thousands of homes, but no other place on planet earth smells like mom and dad’s house.

I know I’m home because of the aroma of mom and dad’s home.

There are certain scents that open up a world of fond and pleasant memories. The aroma of freshly baked bread, cookies, or a pie…yum!!!

I love the smell of freshly brewed coffee in the mornings. Just the aroma of good coffee inspires me to get up to tackle the day.

At the same time, there are certain scents that are so acrid, sharp, stinky that we can’t get the smell out of our minds.

Christ-follower, did you know you smell? The question is whether we are an aroma that brings life or an aroma that brings death.

The way we handle the ups and downs, the joys and the heartaches, the victories and failures points people to Jesus, the hope of the world. Or, the way we handle these things demonstrate that we are just as hopeless and lost as anyone else.

Remember, you are children of the King of kings, the Lord of lords. You are fellow co-heirs with the risen Christ. There is nothing happening in the world today where you are alone.

There is enough of the stink in our world. Be an aroma of life wherever you show up today. Show people how God’s people live. May your life point people to Jesus.