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"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house." Matthew 5:14-15

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it." Matthew 13:45-46

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Strength for the Journey

"But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint." Isaiah 40:31

Muscles taut, tense and ready, anxiously anticipating the start of the race. We were at the finals for my son's swim season today. Swimmers would take the blocks and hold perfectly still, awaiting the signal to sound. Months of working out and conditioning came down to their performances today. The strength of the athlete's training was evident to all.

Apolo Ohno was at the back of the pack for qualifying for speed skating this evening, until the last few laps, when he rocketed ahead to first place. He conserved his energy until the end, when it mattered the most. Many other evidences of athletes that overcome overwhelming odds, to excel in these Winter Olympics, will be seen over the next couple weeks. We will see their strength, and the final culmination of years of hard work and discipline. Young viewers will be inspired to pursue athletic dreams, because of what they witness through these Olympic Games.

As I ponder this, I can't help but think about our Christian walk and how we are instructed to excel. Isaiah says that we can run and not be weary, and walk and not faint by...... waiting. But how can that make us strong? It seems to be an oxymoron. How can just waiting make us strong? The key is drawing into God's presence. Allowing Him to fill us, nurture, teach, and encourage us. Our strength comes from Him, not from us.

Psalm 46:10a says, "Be still, and know that I am God." One way to be strong in the Lord is by being still and quiet - drawing into His presence - resting in Him. I have personally experienced this, as I have been on this spiritual journey for almost two weeks now. I sense a difference in me. I have had more time to just rest in God, to come into His presence, and listen to what He desires to tell me. Through the process I find myself feeling stronger as well.

So I strongly encourage you to find time this coming week to separate yourself from the daily rush of life, to draw away from the world, and crawl up in your Daddy's lap. Allow yourself to be quiet and still in His presence, so He can minister to you. He desires to strengthen and encourage you.

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