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
When God picks you up and places you in a lonely place, it most often is because He wants to get your attention. It’s never comfortable to be plucked from the middle of an active, dynamic and even competitive life and dropped into a secluded, quiet corner where not much happens. When it happened to me, I didn’t welcome the change and felt like God was twisting my arm. After much struggling, I settled in to my quiet life and asked the Lord to make clear to me the lesson He wanted me to learn.
When I thought I learned a lesson or two from God, I was expecting to be brought into the thick of things again; to be restored to my former work, activities and status. But God was not through with me yet. What I was expecting to be a 4 to 6 months of discipline and learning period from God turned to 5 years in the arid desert. Repeatedly I cried to God asking Him what He wanted me to learn — was it to learn the Bible more? Was it to get involved in ministry? Was it to learn a new trade? I was frantically running around trying to ‘hear’ from God.
After much, much struggling, crying and tantrums, I fell on my knees and raised my arms in surrender. I was broken and empty; there was no fight left in me. I have depleted my savings, couldn’t find a job and felt useless and incompetent. I used to pride myself with the work I accomplished and status I achieved in the corporate world and now I felt it all go down the drain. Without it and feeling that the Lord closed that door in my life, I was at a lost as to whom I was. And so, broken and empty, I humbly waited on the Lord.
And that was exactly where the Lord wanted me to be: looking and waiting on Him, empty, broken and humbled. He took away the idols and things that I based my identity and confidence on. He emptied my pockets, closed-off work and several doors that I may turn to my Refuge and my Deliverer. He emptied me and brought me to my knees that He may be my Strength and my Righteous Judge. He rendered useless my so-called titles and achievements that I may find who I am in my Holy King. The Lamb of God broke my pride and vanity to shape me into a vessel for His compassion and grace. My Creator plucked me from the world I knew that my eyes may be opened to the abundant life He had planned for me. The Everlasting God forever broke my worldly crutches that I may soar and fly with Him.
It was a painful process, to shed my narrow, old selfish ways. But it was a joyful experience too, to know who I am in Christ and be assured that absolutely nothing could separate me from His love. I was in an arid desert but it was a most intimate time with my Lord and Savior.