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Monday, March 10, 2014

Pray to Soar

“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 40:31, NIV).

Do you feel defeated? Are you aching to soar above all the trials in life that have come your way? Are you discouraged because you have waited and not seen your promise? Perhaps it has been this way for awhile, and nothing changes. You ask for more faith, and it just doesn't seem to come. Then one day you discover in the Bible this statement. “We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4). This rocks you to the core. Rejoice in your suffering? That is exactly what it says, and the reason for it is the best. You rejoice, not because your trial produces pain, but because it creates spiritual maturity in you. It grows your faith......if you rejoice in it, and determine to learn from it.

Consider Romans 5:3-4. Suffering creates the need to hang on....to persevere. Perseverance reveals the strength found in good character. Good character (virtue) is what is grown as a result, and produces the ability to have great hope. Hope doesn’t disappoint, but fuels your faith (Romans 5:5). You rejoice in the fact that you grow in spiritual maturity. Faith is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you cannot see (Hebrews 11:1). Hope that needs to be seen says, “I kind of believe, but let me just see enough, so that I can really believe.” This is human hope..... not hope born of spiritual growth in God. It is not the kind of hope that trusts that the unseen will come. It is certainly not the hope that understands how to wait patiently. It is definitely not the kind of hope that inspires faith.

Spiritual hope does inspire faith. It springs up when you have learned to allow Him to handle what you can't handle....when you have allowed the trials of life to create the ability to wait patiently. Have you ever considered waiting as being equivalent to hoping? “Do you not know?” Isaiah declares, “Have you not heard? 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. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in (or wait upon in KJV)) 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 40:28-31, NIV). Here God is revealed as one whose wisdom surpasses human understanding, and who is incapable of failure. He becomes not only the God of power revealed through His creation, but also the God of power given to His creation. He is your gift to gain spiritual hope which produces greater faith.

Your own resources aren’t enough to generate this kind of spiritual hope, and the ability to wait hopefully. For this to happen you must exchange your strength for His. When you give the Lord your concerns with the assurance that He is in control, spiritual hope not only springs from suffering, but also produces a greater faith that waits for what the world considers impossible. Now waiting only makes you stronger instead of defeating you. You have grown from suffering to hope, and from hope to faith.

Pray to soar on wings like eagles! Pray to persevere! Pray for growth of character! Pray for spiritual hope to wait expectantly for His promise! You will not grow weary or faint in the process. Your faith will hold you strong.

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    You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You. —Isaiah 26:3 NKJV              Nothing is con...