“Those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall soar on wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31
Waiting on God, seeking Him, His presence, renews our strength. Last month I shared my thoughts about why we should wait on God instead of running ahead of Him to make life work our way. But waiting on God also means waiting for Him in the secret place.
From my personal journey with God and hearing from other believers, I know spending quality time with God is one of the most challenged spiritual disciplines. For His children sitting on His lap and chatting with Him should be the most natural thing.
The lost art of being calm and quiet
Unfortunately for us, we are so tuned to be active, make plans, get things done, work our to-do list, that we have become incapable to unwind and be calm. If we unwind at all, we tend to be busy yet again with our phones, TV or other activities.
Think about the last time you were completely calm, with the world and the noises around you shut out. Your last evening spent in intentional quiet solitude.
Astonishingly, despite our hustle and the constant occupation of our mind, God still finds a way to speak to us. I wonder how intense and clear His voice would be if we only took time out to be still, seek His face and wait for Him to meet with us.
Our devotional time, if it exists, is filled up with reading Christian books, listening to worship music or sermons. All these are great and have a place in our life to increase our knowledge and understanding of God and His word.
Is it possible though that these are again another expression of our restlessness? It’s not a TV show, not social media, not a newspaper, yet it is someone else’s voice blaring at us. It is never us and God. Just the two. Alone.
Are we avoiding time alone with God?
Worse than it stemming from incapability, I wonder if we, intentionally or not, avoid one-on-one moments with God – because of fear. A fear that if we really shut ourselves in with God, He would not turn up. That we would just sit there, not sure what to do and waiting on something we don’t even know what it is.
Maybe in the past we have tried being alone with God, with an expectation of how it should unfold, anticipating a certain feeling or hearing an audible voice. As that didn’t happen we felt frustrated or thought God let us down.
The Bible does not promise sensation but strength
Isaiah tells us that when we wait on the Lord – meaning doing just that, wait, calmly and quietly – He will renew our strength. The Bible doesn’t promise us goose bumps or a vision of Jesus appearing in our bedroom. It promises us strength. Strength in our faith, strength in our walk with God, strength for our daily hustle that we need not manage on our own.
Your new strength might not be obvious at first, but have faith that He meets with you, refreshes you and that you indeed grow stronger.
So let’s try to intentionally set time apart, schedule regular dates with God, shut ourselves out from the world and in with God, without distractions, and just speak to Him, wait and listen. And if nothing “happens”, we can be assured He kept His promise: we have received new strength.