Psalm 94:18-19 (NLT)
I cried out, “I am slipping!” but your unfailing love, O Lord, supported me. When doubts filled my mind, your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer.
A few months ago, I bought a Swiffer mop. It is a handy device that sprays solution on the floor so you can quickly “mop” it up with the disposable pad. I like it. However, my only complaint so far is that the darn thing goes through batteries quickly. I was using just plain ordinary household batteries but those died with a couple of weeks. Switching to industrial batteries when it was clear cleaning less was not an option, those too did not last very long. It seems batteries run our life. During a layover traveling, I noticed that the airports have now installed power outlets between the chairs at each gate. No more rushing to find a plug and hovering next to the wall like winos around a flaming barrel. Our life is run by batteries. There is one in the mode of transportation we rely on. In the computer we use at work. The technology that keeps us informed. The phone that keeps us in close contact. The only concern we have is if that battery goes dead. I have experienced firsthand the total meltdown of a teenager whose battery life in their phone has not met their expectation or lasted through the day. One would think that it is death of a pacemaker or oxygen machine. Dead batteries are a nuisance and inconvenience in life. But there is more to this dead battery thing than this…
What about our batteries? The ones that keep us ticking. Why can’t there be a power outlet for people to plug into right before they burn out or give up? My battery single is flashing. I am feeling drained and weary physically, emotionally and spiritually. How about you? Life has a tendency to be parasitic but not consider the source. With total disregard for the person, its demands dry us out, use us up and suck the life right out of us. Discarding what is left of the person for the next one who comes along. I woke up this morning with two words circling in my head, “Renew me.” I prayed right there in the bed, but not for renewal about all the other people and things on my heart. Then I heard it again, “Renew me.” Like the signal given off that resonates through the house when the smoke detector battery is about to give up the ghost. Persistent and insistent for attention. “Renew me.” I need to be renewed. There are some areas of my life that need to be restored by the Lord. They are personal. Yet I feel as though others might be able to see the “flashing” indicators. I believe it is the Spirit of God within me telling me…I need to be renewed.
Isaiah 40:28-31 (NLT)
Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.
I have heard the rumor that one should drain a battery completely before recharging it the first time. This is a rumor. There are a few types of batteries that actually have a memory of sorts but for the most part a battery should always maintain a charge of 20 to 80%. Google is a wonderful thing. Balance is essential in our life. We cannot run on high speed all the time. Those who do not run at all will never win. We must learn to live a life of balance. I believe this is God’s Plan for our life. However, when we grow tired and weary feeling almost completely spent – there is meaning and purpose in this place, too. After all, we are the sons and daughters of God who have a detailed plan and purpose for our life that leaves nothing out. I have read this passage in Isaiah 40 over and over. I can recite it from memory as many Christians can. But when I read it today, I found something new. New to me that is.
He gives power to the weak. He gives strength to the powerless. God will give me His Power… when I am weak. God will give me His Strength… when I am powerless. The only thing that I can do when I have no strength is trust the Lord in my weakness. The only thing that I can do when I am powerless is to ask the Lord for His Strength. In that moment when God’s Grace becomes my sufficiency I have everything I need to be renewed. Perhaps these times of feeling weak and weary are not without meaning but meant to fulfill my purpose. Could it be that it is a divine run in with God and His Purpose for my life? God, I hope so.
It is in His Strength and Power that I find everything I need to live out the Plan and Purpose of God for my life. When my battery light is flashing and my spirit calls out for renewal, the Lord is inviting me to come closer, go deeper and get a better connection. What I do in my weakness determines if I will find strength. What I choose in my powerlessness signifies if I will discover His Power.
Psalm 23:1-3 (NLT)
The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
The Lord is my Shepherd. I have all that I need. I have all I need to rest. I have all I need to have peace. I have all I need to have strength. I have all that I need to make good decisions. I have all that I need to bring honor to His Name. I have it already. I just don’t know how to use it properly some days. The key in all this is who is in charge of my life. As my “Shepherd”, He is responsible for providing all these things and He has. I just have to get connected to the source. Just like any battery that needs to be recharged must simply get plugged in, I too must be conscious of my proximity to the Lord and in my walk with Him. If I am weak, I just need to get closer. If I am having my doubts, I just need more of His Word. When life is chaotic, I must find my place in His Presence. He has everything that I need to have strength and power consistently in my life if I am committed and consistent in Him.
Psalm 103:1-5 (NLT)
Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!
Praise will renew us. It is a good starting place. Reminding our heart and mind of all the things that the Lord has done and is doing in our life will definitely change our attitude. Sometimes that is all it takes. We forget at least I do. The hope we have is unseen but hard times and hardships are real. We see them, feel them and are touched by these kinds of things. Healing is a lovely and comforting thought but hard to see when our loved one is undergoing radical chemotherapy. The Lord is our provider seems logical and biblical but when evicted from a foreclosed home it is not the first thing we think. Faith is not easy. Hope is unseen. But those who trust the Lord will be renewed. You aren’t supposed to be the strong one. Weakness releases God’s Power in our life. We are not supposed to be the strong one just the steadfast one to experience His Strength. We forget in the midst of battle who it actually belongs to. Praise puts us back in the right frame of mind. It reshapes our thoughts. Calms our fears.
God’s Word can do the same thing. “I long to obey your commandments! Renew my life with your goodness.” (Psalm 119:40) Let’s be real and transparent for a moment. There are a lot of people who read the Word of God and extricate the promises that they desire. But few really read the Word for instruction as to how to live. See you will not have God’s Promises your way. You will have it the world’s way. But when you read God’s Word and apply it to your life, do what it says, and live how it implies – then God’s Promises that are His Goodness apply to your life. You will have those things you read about because you are doing things God’s Way.
“When you give them your breath, life is created and you renew the face of the earth.” (Psalm 104:30) The Breath of God is His Spirit. His Spirit lives in us. He leads us. He guides us. He is speaking to us. God’s Spirit is constantly on a mission to renew us from the inside out. This is the prospering of our soul. When our soul prospers, so does our life. It is the renewing of His Spirit. The Fruit of the Spirit cultivated in our life produces all those things that we long for. The things that sustain us, satisfy us and renew us day by day. We must learn to look to Jesus to renew us day by day rather than going long periods of time on yesterday’s word or encounter. He is the Source of everything that we need, long for and desire. When we maintain a life balanced in our prayer life, studying the Word, applying it to our life being led by His Spirit – we are consistently renewed day by day, moment by moment and breath by breath.
Ephesians 4:21-24 (NLT)
Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
As the Spirit of God renews our thoughts and attitudes, I believe that there will be times when we feel weak. We are throwing off our old nature to take on the new one. (Colossians 3:10-11) It is an ongoing process that is happening whether or not it is something we are aware of. The regenerative work of God in our life is constant as believers. He never grows weak or weary and is working even when we are not to produce good things in our life making good out of every detail of our life. Our humanity gets in the way sometimes. Thank you Lord that we have His Spirit to guide us and influence us when we are not living up to our full potential in Christ. When we are dry, the water of His Word permeates the hard, dry cracks reaching the seeds of righteousness planted by faith and watered by our tears. It renews us. (Psalm 126:4-6) Lord, revive me again. Renew me. I give you my life. I am plugging back in. I want you to be my source of life – for all my life – in all things. Forgive me when I think of giving up – it is my humanity talking. Lord, I long to be continually renewed by you! No more dead batteries for me. I will stay plugged into your Presence. I need you more than anything else this life has to offer. Renew me today.
Job 29:19-20 (NLT)
“For I am like a tree whose roots reach the water, whose branches are refreshed with the dew. New honors are constantly bestowed on me and my strength is continually