Promise of Strength
By Kris Robinson
28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope 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.
Now tell me – have any of these sounded like you?
“I’m not seeing results fast enough!”
“I WANT to see faster results!”
“I feel like I’m not doing enough!”
These are typical statements because they are a product of our society. Think about it, unless you read the title of this blog, the statements don’t have any subject matter, yet you have likely heard them regarding just about anything. Notably, the question/statements come from a founder of an exercise program that I’ve applied principles to my lifestyle for about a year or so, and only recently have been following a particular routine. Now, I enjoy exercising very much; the thought of gaining physical strength and in turn getting the body I desire, without being vain, is a big deal to me. However, I’ve had one glaring issue; impatience! When answering the question above, regarding exercise, I’d be lying if I didn’t answer, “Yes, yes and well, yes.” I’m guilty of being that person who could not stick with one routine for an extended period of time. If I’m not getting the results that I desire in the time frame I think I should be; I somehow have the realization that I can do better by changing/adapting things. Case in point, I’ve used Beachbody’s workout programs: P90X, P90X+, P90X2, Insanity (Regular, Asylum Vol. 1 & 2, Max:30, T25), Body Beast & 21-Day Fix.
When it comes to exercise, a lot of people do what I’ve done; become impatient and flip-flop. Unfortunately, the same mistakes made in the world of physical fitness, Christ-followers also make in their spiritual fitness! Which begs the question; how do we build our faith-muscle and keep from being another flip-flopper?
As Hanz & Franz would say, “I’m not here to blog, (well maybe I am) I am here to pump (CLAP)… you up!”
So, how do you build muscle? If muscles sit too long and do nothing, they atrophy and eventually they are useless. Yet, if muscles are used, systematically, they condition and grow. Biblically, I believe there is one and only one routine that builds our faith-muscle! Found in this passage from the book of Isaiah we find our routine:
Is. 40:28-31 (NASB) “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutable. He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power. Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.”
Easy workout, right? All you have to do is wait on the Lord. But as with exercise, form is key; here are some steps toward a proper form:
- Taking time to be with the Lord: That’s right, it’s time sensitive, which a lot of us, right off the bat will say, “I don’t have a lot of that.” Let me put it into this perspective then; when you say, “I don’t have the time” you in affect are saying, “It’s not important to me!” Thus, if I were to tell you, you think ‘waiting on the Lord’ isn’t important; how would you feel? Now, might be a good time to do step one!
- Trust Him: A lot of times, if we were to apply the same question/statements at the beginning of this blog to the principle of trusting Him, we’ll probably find that expectations for things we’ve trusted Him for have changed? As mine changed over the course of several workouts, I’d guess that yours have over the course of several prayers; but why? Should our expectations change, or do WE need to change. I think of Psalm 37:4 which says, “Delight yourself in the Lord, then He will give you the desires of your heart.” Also, the parable presented in Luke 18:1-8 shows what persistent prayer can do for you.
- Talk it out with God: Did you catch what Isaiah said we’d be like if we wait? It’s not always about doing more, more, more… it’s about waiting for the Lord! Essentially, we do this through prayer; the definition of which is talking with God. If you’ve ever done it before, when talking to God, you start to see things the way He does. Also, if we talk/pray out loud (like talking to an empty chair for instance), we put things into our physical nature, which gives us another new way to look at things. Christ prayed regularly (Mark 1:35), shouldn’t we?
Kris Robinson is an Assistant Pastor at Free Life Community Church in Terre Haute, Indiana.