Yet those who wait for the Lord
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary.
Isaiah 40:31, NASB
The particular word for “wait” is a much more active word than we think.
It’s not a passive word in the original Hebrew. It does not mean being apathetic or lazy. Sometimes we wait in line at the grocery store, or maybe we’re waiting on a phone call. We regularly wait all the time, and usually, we don’t even realize it.
The Hebrew word for “wait” used in v. 31 is ‘qāvâ‘ which means, ‘to bind together by twisting.’
It literally means to “braid, or twist, using a rope.” It becomes an interesting word picture? Sometimes we only take the English idea of waiting and turn it turns into a frustrating delay. Often, this is why we lose out on what ‘wait’ is really about. I have to believe the Holy Spirit wants to teach this idea of becoming ‘braided up with God.’
All too often we are limited by our definitions, and not God’s Word.
For those of us who are ill— physically or mentally, just to be told simply, “wait on the Lord” is a real challenge. Often, we will end up resenting this counsel (and the counselor) because we have misunderstood what it means to really ‘wait.’ We come tantalizing close to this critical idea, but we never quite make it through the doorway.
Yet when I truly wait on God, I’m actually braiding myself into Him.
He becomes my strength; He is now the strong cord I am braided into. (Perhaps this is how He imparts strength and might to His people?) We need this, and the Lord is quite eager to lead us into this new kind of intimacy.
The promise in Isaiah 40:31 tells us about new strength–the eagle’s wings, holy stamina. This verse is relevant to us today, and we need this kind of strength now. I only want to encourage you in your own prayer time, to see yourself intertwined with the Lord, and to recognize the good gift of the Holy Spirit freely given.
“Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord!”