“Advance Notice” is a devotion series for moving forward and gaining momentum in your walk with Christ. "Advance Notice" means: Pay attention! This is important! Moving forward and gaining momentum in your walk with Christ is going to take some re-focusing and re-adjusting of your life in relation to Christ in your life - and it needs to happen on a regular basis. So think about your walk with Christ in advance, before proceeding any further down the path that your life takes. (A later AN may be a deeper look at this title and concept.) - Joseph
"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" (Isaiah 40:31).
An eagle is an impressive bird, so effortlessly gliding across the sky, using the wind to lift it to greater heights. Few people get the opportunity to see an eagle in the wild, but the sight is well worth the effort.
As believers in Jesus Christ, we should soar like an eagle. Many Christians go through life stuck in the nest, grounded by their lack of hope and lack of joy. That is not how an eagle is designed. An eagle is designed to soar! It has to get out of the nest and fly! To fly high above the earth, gliding on the wind! Not to be sitting in the nest with bugs crawling all over it. An eagle must not forget that it has wings. But that is how we Christians act much too often. We act as if there is no hope and no joy in life, as if there is nothing to live for. We act like an eagle that has forgotten its wings.
This can easily happen to any of us. Anyone can get overwhelmed by life’s circumstances. Anyone can let circumstances or the people in your life distract you from living how you are truly designed to live. Whether life’s circumstances or the people around you are making you feel overwhelmed or distracted from how you know you should live, when we get to this point, we often start sitting in the nest feeling sorry for ourselves instead of continuing to soar as God has intended for us.
But misery and feeling sorry for ourselves is not what God desires for each of us. Through Christ, God has taken us from the dust and dirt and launched us into the splendor of living to the full. Take a look at Ephesians 2:4-10. This passage tells us that we have been lifted from the dirt to the glorious presence of God. We are loved and honored because Christ Jesus has given us life. We are like the eagles who soar above the heavens. We are no longer dead in our sins. We have life with Christ and the life He has given us is a glorious adventure to be enjoyed and lived for Him.
Ephesians 2:4-6 says, “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ . . . And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” Exalted to the heights, we are no longer to be wallowing in the mud and muck of self-centered attitudes and joyless perspectives. “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10). God has saved us, rescuing us from sin and death, and giving us life and hope and purpose. We have been saved for life, to really live, to journey into the splendor of serving God.
Isaiah 40:27-31 reminds us that we serve a mighty God, and that we should put our hope in Him. Verse 27 asks, Do you think that God doesn’t pay attention to you, that he doesn’t look out for you? The answer is that He is always faithful, He is always trustworthy, He always cares. Isaiah 40:31 says, “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.”
Don’t be discouraged. Don’t get stuck in the dirt. Cast off any self-centered, joyless, or purposeless attitudes. Rise up and fly like an eagle. Put your hope in God and trust Him all the time. Life is not always smooth, but God has great things in store for your life when you trust Him. Enjoy the life that you have in Christ and find delight in serving God. Fly like an eagle rather than forgetting that you have wings.
Here are three steps toward renewing your strength to soar.
Check out your attitudes. Confess any sinful attitudes to the Lord. Choose an attitude of hope in the Lord despite the circumstances or people that may distract you or overwhelm you.
Renew your focus on the Lord and on living for Him (Heb. 12:1-2; 1 Pet. 3:15-16). Letting your focus in life shift to yourself or to your circumstances will blur your vision and make you stumble.
Pray and ask the Lord to renew His strength in you so you can overcome the challenges you face.