However, recently I was struck with how silly this frustration is. Don't get me wrong, it's a very real frustration, and probably one I will continue to feel fairly often in my lifetime. But this is why:
A friend pointed out Isaiah 40:31 says, "but those who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles.." (ESV)
First, it's important to notice that a failure of strength comes when you don't wait on the Lord. Isaiah begins by talking about young men, in the prime of their strength, becoming tired and short of strength. These are the guys that have every right to rely on their physical strength, but he points out that even that strength does not last!
Then where does lasting strength come from? Does it exist? Do we have access? ABSOLUTELY. And it's as simple as waiting, trusting, relying on the One of Infinite Strength. That's how the job gets done! simply by waiting on the One Guy that does have all the strength.
And this is exactly what the Lord brought to mind earlier this week when I was just short of whining to Him about why I felt like I was running low, like I was near my strength depletion. Why was I feeling, again, overlooked? It was like I missed out on my "strength refill." Didn't He always promise to give me the strength I needed when the time comes?
Not exactly. In between a string of complaints, I heard Him say, so patiently, "Hey, Case. If you didn't have needs, you would have no reason to wait on me, and trust. Trust that I see; trust that I know; trust that I provide. And do you remember what I promise to those who wait on me?"
Soaring on wings like eagles.
Who doesn't want to soar like the eagles do? What child doesn't look at the birds and wonder what it would be like to be that high up? to feel the wind blowing under your wings? to be the picture of freedom? Even Jesus says the birds are careless, just like the flowers of the field, knowing that the Lord provides for their needs (Matt 6:26, 28). And what's more? Eagles have the ability to use some of the strongest winds to their advantage and fly even higher than before.
I don't know about you, but I want to soar. I want to feel the sensation of freedom beneath my wings, fly higher with the strongest winds, and have full confidence in my God's provision.
Now, if I didn't have any reason to wait on the Lord, or lean on Him with greater confidence, or sow into a bigger faith... how could I ever experience this Isaiah 40:31 promise?
My new determination is to have fresh perspective of my frustrations and my unmet needs, a perspective that turns them into a reason to be joyful and excited, because I'm learning what it is to wait on the Lord. This, in turn, means I'll experience what it means to be an eagle.
Smothering my frustrations with faith means I get a chance to soar.