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I have met people that wear their stubbornness like a badge of honor. I have been guilty of it myself touting my Italian heritage like it is reasonable excuse for relying on my own strength. Sometimes we may even start to feel that we are strong enough to handle whatever it is that is thrown at us! After a major surgery this statement came from my own mouth, "I know the doctor told me to stay put, but I will be there even if it is by sheer stubbornness alone!" OUCH!
Don't get me wrong, sometimes the stubbornness isn't destructive, that is when we call it perseverance! Perseverance and stubbornness are different for me in this way. When I am being stubborn, I am relying on my own strength. When I am being perseverant, I am relying on the strength that comes from God. So the big difference has to do with the heart!!
This morning as I was reading my Bible I read this verse in Isaiah 40.
28. "Do you not know? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and His understanding no one can fathom.
29. He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30. Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall,
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."
How wonderful! You see we don't have to rely on our own strength! I don't have to rely on my own strength!!! I like how this set of verses starts off..... I mean, don't you know? Haven't you heard? God is everlasting and never grows tired! He gives strength to the weary and increases the strength of those who are tired! I LOVE THAT!!!!
So honestly, it doesn't matter how strong you think you are......you cannot handle things on your own! What's even better, you don't have to! Verse 30 says, "Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall." You see, we are all in the same boat. No matter what age you are we all need to have our strength renewed from time to time, and that renewal can only be found in Christ!! Then verse 31 sums it up by saying, "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 faint." What I love about this verse is this, as we continue to place our hope in the Lord, he continues to renew our strength!!! We are continually renewed!!! This is not a one time deal, as we live our life for Christ, He continually renews our strength - physically and emotionally!
So, my prayer is that I never forget to put my trust and hope in the Lord, because that is when I am truly the strongest!