Power to Live On

September 14, 2020

Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:30-31 NLT

When I was a child, my mother would occasionally say she was bone weary. I didn’t get that then. Today I do. Today I totally understand what it is to be bone weary. It’s a way-down-deep tired that the dictionary says means “unutterably tired; body, mind, spirit.” We can become bone weary on a day we haven’t even lifted a finger to do physical labor. Life, simply life, with its pain, frustration, confusion, demands, stress, conflicts, delays, unfulfilled dreams can drain anyone until they are empty, weak, and exhausted—more than they ever dreamed they could be. Just plain bone weary. 

Isaiah knew what it was to be bone weary. He was a husband, and a father of two sons. Home life and family responsibilities have many joys, but they also carry great stress. His nation was in grave trouble. He served as a prophet for at least 60 years, serving God and the people through four very different kings. When Isaiah began his ministry, Israel’s northern kingdom was on the brink of collapse. Over the next couple of decades, the Assyrian empire steadily chipped away at the northern kingdom. In 722 BC, the northern kingdom fell when Samaria—its capital—was captured.  

Even though the kingdoms of Israel were divided at this time, there was a great deal of unity among the people. So the southern kingdom was still very affected. Isaiah's ministry after 722 BC focused on trying to get the Judeans to trust in God in the face of the terrible threat of Assyria. But the Judeans wanted to trust Egypt, not God. In the last critical moment, after everything else failed, King Hezekiah prayed to God, and staked his life and his kingdom on God keeping His word. He waited on God. And God did keep His word. Isaiah ministered during those critical years after the northern kingdom fell when Assyria presented a terrible threat to the southern kingdom. Oh, yes. He knew what it was to be bone weary, as a young man and throughout all of his life.

But he also knew what it was to be rejuvenated, refreshed, renewed. He knew how to get there. From personal experience he learned to wait on the Lord. He learned that so much of life is out of man’s control but is always in God’s control. The word he chose for “wait” is the Hebrew word “Qavah” which means “to hope, look for, expect.” He knew where the power for life came from---it was looking to God steadily and anticipating God to come through. It comes from being still, and knowing that He is God and I am not.  

  • Pray: “God, I look to You. I won’t be overwhelmed. Give me wisdom to see things as You do. God, I look to You. You’re where my help comes from.” I will wait on you. Amen. - Taken from the song God, I Look to You, by Bethel Music