Prayerful Waiting

Scripture

“He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”  ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭40:29-31‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Observation

Often we are faint, weary, and exhausted; it is at those times that we wait upon the Lord and our strength will be renewed. We will mount up with wings like eagles; run and not grow weary; and walk and joy faint. 

Application

In our times of exhaustion we are called to wait. This is the point where we often falter in prayer, waiting on the Lord. When we seek the Lord in prayer we  desire an immediate solution to our problems. To wait means we have to postpone the solutions to our dilemma and we are able to draw closer to the Lord and allow our will to be adjusted by his.  In the space between our prayer and God’s solution we come to a greater understanding of how God is using our current situation to accomplish His purposes. Our waiting becomes a time of discernment. 

I once heard someone describe waiting as that of a waiter. The waiter is actively returning back to the table to see how he can better serve the customer. In the same way we are actively waiting on the Lord. Going back to him to discern His will in our situation; and seeking to know how we may best make adjustments in our life so that we may conform to His image and desires for our lives. So as we pray, let us learn to wait for we are promised that at the end of our waiting we will soar.

Prayer

Lord, teach me to wait on you, to yield to your leading so that I may experience your full restoration and rest. 

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Now is the Time

Passage: Isaiah 55:6-9

Point
1. We are to seek the Lord while he can be found and call upon him while He is near.
2. The wicked are called to leave their ways and return back to the Lord SO the Lord may have compassion on him and forgive him.
3. The Lord’s thoughts and ways are so much different than ours. His thoughts are so much different that they are as far as the earth is to the heavens.

Personalize
God has revealed Himself to His creation. He makes himself known through Jesus Christ as revealed in His Word and by the Holy Spirit. This revelation of Himself is to draw all men to their creator and to their God. His revelation is a call to come now and not later. Now that God can be found, come to Him and now that He is near call on Him. Now is the time. In 2 Corinthians 6:2 we read: “In a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you. Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation”. When God calls it is a call to respond now.

I remember as a child we would play for hours in the neighborhood. I could be found in the backyards of neighbors playing until dark. There was a moment in the evening that I would receive the call, the call to return home. Sometimes mom would give out a verbal call down the street. She would call out: “Tim, it’s time for supper”. Often I would not respond immediately but continue to play. I would then hear, “Timothy Wayne”. I knew my time was up and it was time to respond. In the same way, when God calls out it is a call for us to respond now and not later. It is a call to come and fellowship with Him and to turn from those areas in our lives that are distracting us.

As God calls us and we respond we will discover that His ways and thoughts are so much different than ours. We see life through the lens of experience and personal perspectives. No matter how hard we try, our lens will be clouded and our sight will lack the ability to see as God sees. The great news is that God wants to share his perspective and His ways with us. He is calling us to come and share in what He has to offer us. We must come to the realization that we can not live the fulfilling life without God’s perspective and guidance. May we choose to seek Him while He can be found and call on Him while He is near. Today is the day, now is the time.

Prayer
Lord we are reminded that You and Your thoughts are what we need in life. We choose to come to you. We choose to seek You while you can be found and call on You while You are near.

Unshakable Peace

Scripture:  Isaiah 54:10

Points

1.  Even if mountains are shaken and hills removed, God’s unfailing love will not be shaken.

2.  The Lord’s covenant of peace will not be removed.

3.  The Lord has compassion for His people.

Personalize 

Economic trouble fills the news.  Banks and businesses are failing and thousands are loosing their jobs.  It would seem that the mountains of security are being shaken and the hills of success are being removed.  It is a hard lesson, but our security is not found in our financial possessions or achievements.  The peace we desire is beyond what economic stability can offer.  There is a peace we receive only from the Lord.  Jesus said:  Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27)

Prayer

Lord, your love and peace are unshakable.  You are constant and dependable.  Forgive us for placing our security in short lived stability.  We place our trust in You and receive Your peace.

Prayer for Strength

Passage:  Isaiah 40:28-31

Points

1.  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.

2.  God gives strength to the weary and increases power of the weak.

3.  If our hope is in the Lord, our strength will be renewed; we will soar like eagles, run and not grow weary, walk and not faint.

Personalize

At the time of Isaiah’s writing, Assyria was the invincible superpower of the day and they were threatening Jerusalem with conquest (2 Kings 15-20).  Not knowing if they would ever see a better future, they became discouraged and hopeless.  They found themselves in a very difficult situation and Isaiah reminds them that God, the Creator was their only hope for a better day.  Isaiah brought good news, God was able to bring about a change.  They needed to continue to look to Him for their source of strength.

We all have those times when we are weak and weary.  Isaiah tells us the Lord never grows weary.  He is a constant source of “strength to the weary” and “power for the weak”.  We must look to Him to overcome the difficult times of life.  We are told “…let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” (Gal. 6:9)  In the moments when we are weary and tempted to quit, let us remember the Lord will provide the strength to press on.  If we press on and trust the Lord for our strength then we will see the Lord’s hand providing all we need.

Prayer

Lord we praise You, for You are the source of strength to the weary and power to the weak.  When we find ourselves growing weary and weakened by the circumstances of life; we pray You will reveal Yourself to us and remind us You are our source.  Help us to always remember You never grow weary.  May we live according to the promise of Isaiah, “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength, They will soar on wings like eagles,  they will run and not grow weary, and they will walk and not be faint.”

Prayer for Vision

Passage:  Isaiah 54:1-4

Points:

1.  God is calling us to expand our vision.  

2.  When God casts a vision, we need to prepare.

3.  Vision gives hope for our future.

Personalize

“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” (Proverbs 29:18).  In desperate and discouraging times, it is essential to create a vision of faith for the future.  Israel found itself  facing tremendous difficulties.  The exile was a devastating period in their history and they struggled to see the future in a different light.  Could they move beyond their circumstances?  Could they see a better future beyond the tremendous difficulties faced in the exile?  They could not see a better future, but God cast a vision for His people.

Sing, O barren woman,  you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy,… (v.1) God called on his people to shout, because a better future was on the way.  “Enlarge the place of your tent,  stretch your tent curtains wide,  do not hold back;  lengthen your cords,  strengthen your stakes.” (v.2)  A new day for God’s people was on the horizon.  God was casting a faith vision for their future and calling on them to prepare to receive what He was bringing their way.

When faced with a barren time in our lives, we should not loose our faith vision for the future.  What are the areas you have lost your vision for the future?  Do you think your marriage is at the breaking point and there is no hope?  Are your children making bad decisions and it seems there will not be a better day?  Do you feel your job is a dead end job with no possibility for a change?  No matter what the circumstances, we need to see our future through the lenses of faith.  When we see what could be rather than what is, then we are taking the first steps in casting a vision for the future.

Enlarge your tents, because God is bringing something bigger than you could imagine.  Allow God to plant a faith vision in your life for your family, workplace, church, and community.  Do not allow the disappointments of yesterday defeat you in the future.  Keep this verse in mind.  “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”  (Ephesians 3:19-21)

Prayer

Lord, in the times when there is no hope, plant in us a faith vision for the future.  We know you are able to bring a new beginning in the areas of our lives.  May we be faithful to receive the vision and prepare for what You will accomplish.  Lord we know you able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.   We know our future is bright when you are the source of our hope and vision.