“But those who wait for the LORD [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] Will gain new strength and renew their power; They will lift up their wings [and rise up close to God] like eagles [rising toward the sun]; They will run and not become weary, They will walk and not grow tired.”
ISAIAH 40:31 AMP
Last week, I wrote about possessing the promise. We talked about how sometimes you gotta keep circling your walls in prayer until those suckers come crashing down. Today, our subject will be rest. There’s a time for making moves, having a courageous conversations, taking steps, implementing strategies and going forward. But there also comes a time when God just asks us to rest. In both cases, we need huge amounts of faith. It takes faith to make a move but it also takes a lot of faith to know that you’ve made all the moves you can and done all that God has required of you. It takes faith to sit on your hands and wait for God to do what only God can do. And to trust Him that He will do it!
I read an article recently about dating. It was one of those “calm down ladies and let the man pursue you” type articles. There was one point made that really stood out. The author pointed out that at the end of the day, we aren’t waiting on a man (good news, right?). We are waiting on God and God is trustworthy and faithful. Knowing that we are waiting on God makes waiting a little easier to swallow. Men might drag their feet but God? He is always on time.
While we wait, God wants us to be well-rested. Our times of waiting would be totally fruitless if we spent them anxious and worried. And honestly, that type of doubt and fear is a symptom of the fact that we probably don’t have much trust and faith.
We exhibit faith when we are able to wait and rest. Wait and be content. Wait and be happy. Wait and live your life. Never put your life on hold while you wait for your “only ifs”. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
So what do you do when you’ve done all you can? Do you give up? Nope. Not at all. You give it over. You remain in the place of faith and hope but you put whatever “it” is in Gods hands. Here’s the thing. Just because we rest, doesn’t mean God does. He’s working on it. But while you rest, He’s also working on you, if you sit still enough and allow Him to do it.
Go ahead. Sit back, put up your feet and relax. God’s got it.
“When you hear the priests give one long blast on the rams’ horns, have all the people shout as loud as they can. Then the walls of the town will collapse, and the people can charge straight into the town.”
Joshua 6:5 NLT
Recently, I was listening to a sermon given by Christine Caine titled “Possessing the Promise.” The subject material pointed to the walls of Jericho in Joshua chapter 6. Christine talks about how when the Israelites entered the promised land, they encountered the last thing they would expect…looming, formidable walls…seemingly insurmountable walls.
Some times we experience victory, we triumph, only to realize that there are still battles to be fought, even though we have entered the territory that God promised us. Even though we are doing the right things. Even though we have seen so much answered prayer. Sometimes we enter the promises of God and we hit a wall. Things get hard. Transitions get messy. And we could be left to wonder, if God really led me here shouldn’t everything go smoothly? Not necessarily.
So what do you do? You keep marching. In the case of the Israelites, they had to march around those city walls for seven days. For us that means that we continue to move forward in prayer, faith, hope and obedience. Christine says in her sermon that we keep making laps around God’s promises until we see those walls fall down.
This message really resonated with me. One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned this year (and there have been plenty) is the importance of standing in faith and keeping your hope alive, regardless of how things might look. This year God really challenged me to put my nose to the plow and begin to contend in faith for things I couldn’t see (at all!) in the natural and not to stop no matter how desperate my circumstances became. This put me in a position of needing to put my faith and the words God had spoken to me above the opinion of others. It forced me to dry my eyes and look ahead with confident expectation toward a hopeful future.
I am still in that place of contending today and while I may not yet be fully where I would like to be, I have already seen God bring so much restoration to my life and bring beauty from the ashes of my brokenness. More than anything I’ve learned that He is oh so faithful.
What walls are you facing today? Keep on marching. Sooner or later those bad boys will come tumbling down.
You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. (Ps. 139:5)
Life is full of transitions. Transitions can be scary, but they are a whole lot less scary when we put our firm trust and confidence, in our navigator Jesus Christ. In the above-referenced verse, we are told that God “hems us in behind and before.”
God covers our past and leads the way into our future. He redeems past mistakes, hurts, wounds and trials. He weaves our history into a story of redemption that makes way for a legacy that will continue long after we have passed on from this life. He is the God of beauty from ashes and grace from shame. He is the voice behind us whispering in our ear, “This is the way to go. Step here my child.”
He is also the God that takes us by the hand and leads us forward into our destiny. In Proverbs 16:9, we are told, “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” God is our faithful and trustworthy guide. As we set our gaze on Him, He is sure to show us the right path to take. With each step, we can rest in full confidence and reliance on Him.
Today, whatever change or transition you might be facing, be assured that God has already made the way. The past is behind us. The future lies before us. Can you hear His voice? Take a step today.