God Renews My Strength

God Renews My Strength

Joshua 1:6,7,9
Be strong and courageous… Be strong and courageous… Be strong and courageous…

But what if I can’t?

This is another one of those scriptures that sometimes seems unrealistic. How can God expect me to be strong after all that’s happened to me? How can God expect me to be strong when my own brain is my enemy?

The good news is: He knew there would be times when I would be weak and want to give up. And He didn’t just tell me to suck it up and get over it.

He provided His own strength for me.

Isaiah 40:29-31
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 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.

By ourselves, we can only do so much. And God knows there are going to be times when we exhaust ourselves before we finish the task He calls us to.

He doesn’t judge or condemn us for being weary or weak. He knows we’re going to get so tired that we stumble and fall.

When I fall down from exhaustion, when I run out of steam trying to “run with perseverance the race marked out for [me]” (Heb. 12:1), I know that God’s not mad at me. He’s been running alongside me the whole time and He’s there now to give me His strength to get back up and keep running.

Isaiah 41:10
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

When I don’t even want to get back up and keep running, He’s right there beside me.

Psalm 119:28
My soul is weary with sorrow;
  strengthen me according to your word.

His Word is where I find the strength I need to keep going. His Word is where I find the faith to keep believing that it’s even worth trying again.

Romans 10:17
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

His Word tells me that when my own heart gives out, it’s not the end.

Psalm 73:26
My flesh and my heart may fail,
  but God is the strength of my heart
  and my portion forever.

His Word tells me that He’s holding my hand so that when I fall, He catches me.

Psalm 37:23-24
The Lord makes firm the steps
  of the one who delights in him;
though he may stumble, he will not fall,
  for the Lord upholds him with his hand.

And His Word tells me that even if I get myself in trouble, He’s right there beside me to walk me through it.

Psalm 46:1
God is our refuge and strength,
  an ever-present help in trouble.

After the Israelites returned to Jerusalem from exile, the priest read the law to them. They were overwhelmed with sorrow because the law pointed out all the things they’d done wrong.

But Nehemiah told them to stop focusing on what they’d done wrong and start praising God for all that He’d done for them in spite of their own behavior.

Nehemiah 8:10
Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

When I take the focus off of what I’ve done wrong and start focusing on all the wonderful things God has done for me, I’m able to start taking small steps toward joy. And that’s where I’m going to get strength.

I’m not drumming up more of my own strength by modifying my behavior from complaining to praising. I’m turning my face and my heart toward God and opening myself up to receive His strength.

Romans 15:13
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

God Himself will fill me with hope, by the power of the Holy Spirit. And that hope is the key to renewing my strength.

Isaiah 40:31
but 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.

So not only will God give me the strength I need when I need it, but He’ll also give me the hope I need to get that strength.

How has God held you up and kept you going when you had no strength of your own?

Photo credit: Victor Freitas

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s