“Yet, the strength of those who wait with hope in the Lordwill be renewed.

They will soar on wings like eagles.

They will run and won’t become weary.

They will walk and won’t grow tired.”

Isaiah 40:31

How do you handle “waiting?”   Are you a fidgeter?  A snoozer? A pacer?  A snacker?  A complainer? An I’ll-just-do-a-little-work-while-I’m-waiting-er?   Do you analyze the inefficiencies that are causing your wait?  Do you just sit back and watch all the other waiting folks? Do you tell your entire life story to the person waiting next to you?

Life is full of “wait.” It can be tiring, frustrating, and stressful.

Or, it can be transformational.

In the desert, nearly 200,000 people wait.  They wait for justice, for attention, and for their return to their homeland.  It’s been a 40+ year wait.  (Like some other desert refugees who were dreaming of the Promised Land of their future.  Sound familiar?)

Waiting can be exhausting…maddening….discouraging. Isaiah wrote this beautiful description of waiting “with hope in the Lord.”  He describes strength occurring within the wait.

  • Soaring –  the way eagles soar.  They float, effortlessly.  They catch the wind and let it carry them.  They see the things of earth as far smaller than we earth-walkers see them.  Far less significant.  When we catch a glimpse of the soaring eagle, it takes our breath away in it’s power, beauty, strength…defying one of the greatest laws of earth – gravity.
  • Run– and not become weary. Like a long-distance runner.  Marathon winners run like the wind.  Every muscle in top condition.  Finding that pace … that perfect stride where every part is working together in such unison that the speed and rhythm seems to enter into a realm that breaks through the constraints of this earth and enters a freedom unlike anything else of this world.
  • Walk– and not faint. Slow and steady forward movement. It allows for more time to take in the surroundings, enjoy the views.  Walking makes conversation possible, with more time to think….and look….and make ‘going the distance’ more feasible.

My desert family/nation has been one of the greatest living examples I have ever witnessed of the realities of Isaiah’s words.  They had to flee their homeland in fear and horror, by any means possible.  Car, truck, running on foot. . . and eventually walking, traumatized and grieving. They journeyed into their unknown future in the desert.  They lost so much, yet clung to their faith that God was in charge of their lives and future.  As the years passed, they regathered in that impossible desert, establishing temporary homes, schools, a government, while holding onto their identity and culture.

They wait.  For justice to come, for  the world to know, and for God to intervene.  But they do not wait in despair.  They have learned to rise above their tragedy….to look up to the heavenlies and to soar.  They continue to run the long race of life…with grace and determination.  And they walk in faith that God sees, God knows, and that He is the only One truly worthy of their honor.

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