“but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
When you read things like this, i wonder what you think about. Do you think success in life? Do you think money raining down on you? Do you think health, wealth and prosperity? Do you think family, children, marriage … i wonder what you think.
We love to take powerful verses like this and rip it out of context, because we love what it seems to promise. Did you ever read the chapters leading up to this? From Ahaz to Hezekiah? What is God speaking about in chapter 40?
Here is a quick thought about “mounting up with wings like eagles”, a quick flying lesson, if you will:
You need to know that between Isaiah 6 and 40 there is a lot of stuff happening. You need to know that the people who read this first where awaiting the Messiah. Was it Ahaz? A most resounding no! In fact, he was likely the worst of them all. So, no! Bad. Bad Ahaz!
Oh, maybe then it was Hezekiah? I mean, he lived a faithful live, didn’t he? Sort of, but not really. He must have looked like the One for quite some time when he was reforming the worship in Judah, tearing down pagan altars and rebelling against Sennacherib. But he had his issues. Isaiah 39 ends with his ridiculous statement of “after me the flood!” (i.e. as long as things are going well when i am alive).
God’s people, the Jews (here Judah), had been through a lot. They have endured ransacking, bad kings, near destruction (the northern kingdom was taken away completely – and all their own doing too) and still no sign of the Messiah. Hezekiah died. Still no Messiah.
The Babylonians came and took also Judah out of the Promised Land. The Temple was destroyed, all hope dashed to pieces. And in the midst of that God says “comfort, comfort my people!” (Isa 40)
When you are going through serious times, with enemies at the gate, the earth shaking and moving (Ps 46:1-7) where are you looking to? Are you also looking for salvation, or are you also losing hope?
We have this strange idea that God will be “mounting [us] up with wings like eagles” through comfort and success. The context says “no ways!” Have you ever thought about how eagles “mount up”, how they fly? Well, they don’t fly by flying away from where the wind comes from. No, they fly against the wind. That’s how they get drift.
And the way your life gets “drift” is the same way. The way to mount “up with wings like eagles” is to fly straight into the wind and then “be still and know” that He is God (Ps 46:10). He will lift you up. It is always He who does the lifting and strengthening, but you better be prepared to face the wind head on. We like to be “saved” by getting away from the danger, by lack of troubles and presence of security … a heaven on earth. But not with God. True faith grows like bacteria on alfalfa when it encounters trouble.
Don’t run away from the wind. If you do, then God says “there will be no flying today my son!”
Read Isaiah 40 and know who God is. Hang on to the cross and face the wind. Set your sight on what is to come, eyes wide open, fixed on Him. That’s how you fly.