Isaiah 40:30-31 How To Get Renewed Strength

Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 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. Isaiah 40:30-31

Everyone has days of weariness. The business of things to do, places to go, and people to see gets to a person and they begin to slow down. It does not matter the age of a person, because given enough time and work, they will get weary.

Watch a young child running and playing. It appears as if he will never slow down or come to a stop. He runs on the Energizer battery, he just keeps going and going and going and going. But if one watches long enough, even that young child runs out of energy. Little children are known for all of a sudden laying down in the middle of the floor and going to sleep, or falling asleep with their face on the plate at the dinner table. Their energy has given out.

Isaiah says that there is a way to have more energy and strength. There is a way to have it renewed. It is found in having hope in the Lord.

Going through this life can be very wearisome. It can drain the energy of a person, especially when things are not going so well. It appears that you do good over and over again and again, and do not seem to get any good results. Things still go wrong and you get weary and want to quit. Most of the world will quit.

To keep going and renew your strength, focus on the Lord. Find the hope you have in Him. Keep in mind that one day Jesus will return and take you to heaven where there will be no more sorrow, pain or suffering.

As you focus on that, you will have the needed energy and strength to keep going. You will be able to soar above others in this world. You will be able to run and not get weary. You will walk on in the heat and not faint.

The reason you can do this, is because you know that in the end you will win with God on your side. Hold on to that hope in the Lord and renew your strength.

I pray today that you will personally know God; that you will know the promises God has for you; that you will trust God’s word to you; and that you will know the strength God can provide.

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Isaiah 40:8 Shout “Here Is Your God!”

You who bring good news to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good news to Jerusalem, lift up your voice with a shout, lift it up, do not be afraid; say to the towns of Judah, “Here is your God!” Isaiah 40:8

God had chosen to allow Judah to be sent into exile for a time for their refusal to follow Him. Once that time was up they were allowed to go back to their land. As the people are going back to the land, they are able to bring good news. It was good news that they were going back to the land, and they had good news that God was with them.

While in exile, many of the people felt that God had abandoned them. It did not appear as though He had remembered them while in exile. Yet, it was not true. The greatest news was God was with them, and they were to shout it out loud to everyone. They were to point out to everyone who God is.

This passage is also part of the prophecies pointing to Jesus. Later Jesus would be called Emmanuel, which means, “God with us”. The difference in the news that the Israelites had and what can be proclaimed today, is that God is with believers and Jesus has removed all of their sins.

There may be times when you go through a struggle and feel as though God has left you…it is not true. God is always right there beside you. You just have to acknowledge Him and believe Him.

As you know and realize God is with you, then you must also shout it out. Let the world know who God is. Too often believers are afraid to shout it out. They are afraid of what others might think or do. Yet, every person deserves the right to hear about Jesus, not just you and few of your friends.

The world may not like you shouting it out, but you have the greatest news of all time. Those that are willing to hear, will hear and respond. It will bring encouragement to other believers, and will point Jesus to those who don’t believe.

As you go through your day today, let everyone you come in contact with that, “Here is your God!”

I pray today that you will know that God is with you; that you will know God remembers you; that you will not be afraid to proclaim God is with you; and that you will be a bold witness to everyone you meet.

Isaiah 39:6 Failing In The End With Pride

The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your predecessors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD. Isaiah 39:6

Hezekiah had faithfully followed God and led the nation towards God all his life. At some point, he came down with a sickness and was told he would die. After crying out to God, he was told he would live another fifteen years.

The king of Babylon had heard of Hezekiah’s sickness and recovery, and so he sent envoys to him with a gift. When they showed up, Hezekiah showed them everything that he had in his entire kingdom. Right after showing all of this stuff, Hezekiah was told that after he dies the kingdom would be taken from his descendants.

At first glance at this, one may ask why all of his stuff would be taken away? And what did he do that was so wrong?

As Hezekiah was showing off all of the stuff that had been accumulated over the years, he did it without giving God the credit. It was pride that was showing off everything. The king of Babylon had sent a gift because of the illness and recovery. It had nothing to do with what had been accumulated or done before.

It was a great opportunity to tell the king of Babylon how he had recovered from the illness. It was not the time to show off all of the treasures.

There are times when God may do a healing or some other miracle in a person’s life. Often, instead of pointing people to what God has done, they continue on with life and show off what they have done.

When God does some healing or miracle in your life, take the time to show people what God did in that situation. Point people to who God is and His great mercy on you.

Do not be like the rest of the world, and point them to what you have accomplished in life. The pride of the things you have accumulated will be a downfall and failure in the eyes of God.

You did not get all that you have because of your own power, it was blessed to you by God and His power.

Do not allow pride to bring your downfall at the end of your life.

I pray today that you will recognize God’s work in your life; that you will point people to God; that you will not show pride in your own things; and that you will give credit to God for all that you have and do.

Isaiah 37:5-6 Do Not Be Afraid Of Reports

When King Hezekiah’s officials came to Isaiah, Isaiah said to them, “Tell your master, ‘This is what the LORD says: Do not be afraid of what you have heard–those words with which the underlings of the king of Assyria have blasphemed me.” Isaiah 37:5-6

Sennacherib, king of Assyria, had come up against Jerusalem and laid siege to it. The city was threatened to be overrun and everyone killed. He boasted about the power that Assyria had and all the other nations he had overcome already. The people were afraid of him, because his army was much stronger and Assyria had destroyed many other nations.

King Hezekiah sent some people to Isaiah to find out what God had to say about the situation. Basically Isaiah said that they were to ignore the reports that were being delivered by Sennacherib’s men. God saw what he was saying and how Assyria was blaspheming Him.

Since that time the methods of delivering messages have changed, but the messages often being delivered are the same. Watch any news channel and you will see many reports of danger and threats. One nation is always threatening another nation. One group of people is threatening another group of people. Governmental laws threaten some people. Reports of epidemic sickness arise. Reports of economic collapse are everywhere. Reports of violence, rape, murder, theft are always out there. Fear is found everywhere.

As a believer in Jesus, you will hear these reports on a regular basis. There is nothing to stop these reports. However, you do not have to live in fear because of the reports being made. God is greater than any power in this world.

Just as Hezekiah did, you must bring those reports to God. He is the one who is really in control of everything. Without His permission, nothing can happen.

Instead of running in fear of those reports, give them to God and trust Him in how to deal with them. Trust that God knows what is best to be allowed or stopped. There is purpose for everything that happens in this life, both the good and the bad things. God will use everything, but all of it will be used for your benefit, if you allow Him to use it that way.

Are you fearing those reports?

Or are you trusting God with those reports?

I pray today that you will know that God is in control; that God will help you to not fear any bad reports; that you will bring all reports before God to deal with; and that you will be a witness of God’s great power to this world.

Isaiah 36:16-17 Don’t Make Deals With The Enemy

“Do not listen to Hezekiah. This is what the king of Assyria says: Make peace with me and come out to me. Then each of you will eat fruit from your own vine and fig tree and drink water from your own cistern, until I come and take you to a  land like your own–a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards.” Isaiah 36:16-17

The king of Assyria had sent someone to talk to the people of Jerusalem about giving up a fight. He was working on invading the city and the people were holding out. They were asked to surrender and make peace with him, and he would allow them to live in their own land until he could bring them to his land. They were given many promises.

On the surface, the promises that were made sound very good. They were offered free moving to a new land that had grain, wine, bread and vineyards–everything they had and needed. Going with him would mean no battle or war to be fought and no one would die.

Despite the promises, there was nothing good about the move. The land may have all those things, but they would most likely not be able to enjoy them. They would go there as prisoners or slaves.

The enemy still does this type of talk today. The world tries to tell you to follow their ways and you will have life and be able to enjoy it. Wealth, health, and fun is promised if you will just leave what God has told you to do and walk their way.

Movies promise joy in entertainment if you will watch what God calls filth. Drugs and sex are pushed to give you a moment of pleasure. Living in certain lifestyles promises enjoyment. Changing gender, now is a promise of a better life.

Living the ways of the world may provide a short-term pleasure, but in the end it brings captivity and death. The other side of the fence may look good, but it is filled with death.

Who are you trusting in to provide the best life for you?

If you are trusting in God, do not allow the world to sway you to their lies and deception. The world cannot provide better, or even as good of a life as God can. Do not trust this world. Live for God.

I pray today that you will put your trust in God; that you will not be swayed by the promises of the world; that God will reveal all truth to you; and that you will know the provision and blessings God has for you.

Isaiah 35:1-2 Blooming With Joy

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel  and Sharon; they will see the glory of the LORD, the splendor of our God. Isaiah 35:1-2

Deserts are amazing places. When there is no rain, all a person can see is sand as far as the eye can see. At the times of the rains, however, the landscape changes. Grass and flowers shoot up and blossom everywhere, almost overnight. The desert flowers shine brightly with many colors. Life arises very quickly in the desert with the rains.

Isaiah paints this picture as he describes the time of God’s splendor being revealed on the earth. That splendor is the salvation that Jesus provides. Jesus, like the rains, brings new life where everything was dead.

People living in this world, live in a desert. There is no real life, even though they feel as though they are living life to the fullest. Life is full of fear, worries, pain, suffering, meaningless, hatred, jealousy, and death. There seems to be no meaning to what is going on in the world.

Once a person accepts the forgiveness Jesus provides, there is a new life. Jesus makes a person a new creation, with new, abundant life.

It is at this point that the person bursts with shouts of joy. They have new life. Their outlook on life has changed. In what was a desert place, there is now life, blooming with great joy.

Your life may be or may have been a desert place, when you did not know Jesus. Going through life may be mundane and boring, with no excitement or joy.

Following Jesus will allow you to bloom with God’s glory and splendor. You are God’s prized possession, because of what Jesus has done for you and in you. You can know the joy of the salvation given to you. You can know abundant life that Jesus provides.

As you go through this life, allow yourself to be filled with abundant joy and life. Bloom with the characteristics of God in this desert place of a world.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your savior; that you will allow God to make you into a new creation; that you will bloom with the joy of God in this world; and that you will bring life to those around you.

In Over The Head

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to go on a cruise with one of my sons to the Bahamas. The views of the beaches and the water was astounding! I had never seen water so blue in my life, unless you count Kool-Aid in a glass. Living in Central Texas, there are no long, nice sandy beaches anywhere to be seen and the water is definitely not blue.

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While in the Bahamas, I was able to go swimming in the ocean on one of their many beaches. It was my first time to ever swim in the ocean. It was amazing to swim in the water. The water was warm and crystal clear. Occasionally I could see a small tropical fish swimming in the water nearby.

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I grew up in Northern Wisconsin and swam in Lake Superior all the time. One of the things about swimming in that lake when you went out into the deeper water, you had to know how to swim or at least be able to float on the water. If you did not know how to do either, you would sink and go under.

The amazing thing on the water in the Bahamas, was that I could float without trying. The salt in the water was enough to keep me floating without work. I could actually stand up straight, with my arms at my sides, in over my head and float there in place. I had never floated without having to work at it and stay concentrated.

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As I was floating around noticing how this worked it God impressed upon me something. I was out in over my head in the water. In order for me to touch the floor of the ocean, I would have to dive down at least two feet below the water. And the interesting thing was, that because of the buoyancy of the water, that was  not exactly easy to do.

I could not see the salt, or anything else in the water that would hold me up. I had to trust what was unseen to keep my floating and I did not have to work at it. It was not my effort that kept me floating, but the salt level in the water.

In the very same way in life, there are times I must be in over my head in situations in life. God has called me to be His witness to this world. In order to be His witness I have to get out in this ocean of a world and be that witness. I have to step out into deeper waters where the fish (men and women) are to tell them about Jesus.

It is so easy to think that I cannot be the one to witness to someone. Maybe that person is too important, or maybe he is such a bad person, or maybe that person does not like me. Fears that the person may be angry or retaliate. Or maybe I am in a hurry and cannot take the time to witness. The reasons to not witness are numerous.

Yet, God has called us to step out into the deeper waters and trust Him. He is like the salt in the ocean, you cannot see Him, but He is there holding you up. As you step out into the ocean of this world, among the people you can float and be His witness.

Just as a person must let go of his fears of going under the water and drowning when in the ocean near the Bahamas and be willing to float, so you must let go of your fears to go out and be His witness.

God will be there with you and take care of you. He will not let you fail, if you are doing His will, in His way, and in His time.

Today, I want to encourage you to step out into the deeper waters, in over your head and trust God. Trust God to take care of you as you do His will and be His witness. Just as it was exciting for me to be floating, while standing straight up, so it will be exciting when God touches lives through you.

God can and will do amazing things in and through you, if you will allow Him to do it. Trust Him today in the deep waters of this world.