Do you not know? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the whole earth.
He never becomes faint or weary; there is no limit to his understanding.
He gives strength to the faint and strengthens the powerless.
Youths may become faint and weary, and young men stumble and fall,
but those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not become weary, they will walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:28-31 CSB
The Strength We All Need
I woke up to five different pairs of African eyes staring down at me. I had arrived in Rwanda only two days earlier. The morning after I landed in the most beautiful country I’d ever seen, we drove to a refugee camp. We drove for hours, twisting and turning, bumping along pot-holed roads. Each time we hit a bump, our heads hit the ceiling of the jeep we were in.
As we climbed higher up the mountain, the jet lag began to set inside of me. What time was it back in Canada? Three or four in the morning? The air was hot, too. I had never traveled anywhere internationally before. Between the jet lag, hot temperatures, and the thin air as we climbed higher altitude, I began not feeling well.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” I told myself. “It’s your second day in Africa — you can’t be sick.” I pushed the dizziness further down within me and took another sip of water.
We arrived at the refugee camp. It was there where I met Nathalie — a woman who had the eyes of Jesus. Looking into her deep eyes, I could see the reflection of love staring back at me. She was a seamstress. She took me down to her small shop, showing me the beautiful pieces she was in the process of making. There were other people there, too — pastors, and community leaders. We would soon go on a tour of the camp.
Suddenly, black spots danced in front of my vision. I could hardly see Nathalie anymore. The air was thin — I couldn’t catch a full breath.
Then I was on the ground.
When I awoke, everyone was peering down at me.
“I’m okay,” I said. “I only fainted. I was just a little hot.”
I had accidentally created quite a commotion. Some of the refugee camp leaders wanted to take me to their hospital for a medical exam. I assured them I was okay and settled for a cold bottle of sweet Coca-Cola.
It wasn’t the first time I had fainted in my life. It happens sometimes — when I’m hot or hungry or the air is too thin. I’m always okay after, albeit a little tired.
Even though I fainted physically in Rwanda, I think about how sometimes I feel faint in my walk with God.
There are times in my life that feel so trying — physically and emotionally — and I can’t help but cry out to God, wondering where He is or why He isn’t helping me.
But the truth is: He’s always there.
I love this part of Isaiah 40, “…but those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength… they will run and not become weary, they will walk and not faint.”
I can’t rely on my own strength in this life. Our human bodies fail, our minds and hearts grow tired. But when we trust in Jesus, He will renew us. That doesn’t mean our circumstances will change. But it does mean we’ll have the strength of God, and He will carry us through them.
One of the things I love most about God is that His promises are always true. If He promises to renew our strength when we grow faint or tired or weak, then that’s a promise we can be sure He’ll keep.
Where do you need God to give you strength today?