• Retief Burger

Of game drives and eternity DAY 31

Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 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 40:30-31 Today our estate had an exciting initiative that got everyone moving and out of the lethargic mundane that comes from lockdown-living. A very creative mother called us all to action: Put out some toy animals in your yard and go for a game drive! My kids (and us) went nuts and immediately pounced. As we went on this little safari you could sense the excitement in the air. As we passed fellow-scouters in their cars there were hearty waves and adult-giggles as everyone in the family had smiles on their faces. The joy was contagious and I believe everyone is going to sleep feeling a little lighter tonight. It was as if our strength was renewed. …but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. When the prophet Isaiah is giving hope to the future exiled nation of Israel, he is also speaking to us. People whose strength needs to be renewed. They were to be ready at any moment, when God spoke the word, to return to their beloved homeland and start the long trek back from Babylon. This passage is also encouraging us today: 1. To be ready for the Lord’s return. 2. To find our strength through hoping/waiting. “Keep eternity before the children.” These were the parting words of Dallas Willard’s mother. He was just two years old when she died. And so with what final words, strength, and wisdom she had – she reminded her husband of what was most important to “keep.” What matters most in this life should be in view of eternity. As a Christian I believe there is an eternity and I am living with that in front of me. Many a time when I have grown tired and weary or stumbled and fell, this kept me going. Way beyond the end of this lockdown and international crisis there is a hope of the Lord returning. Isaiah 40 is therefore also a prophetic message that reminds us that we will not forever live in ‘exile’, but will one day return to our true home. I want to be ready and living for what matters most. This gives me strength to not give up. What are you ultimately living for? I pray that your eyes will also look beyond the now and see the Greater Story. Tomorrow I’ll share on how to hope in the Lord, but I leave you with well-known speaker and author Louie Giglio’s words as he writes in his book ‘I am not, but I know I am’ “Life is the tale of two stories – one finite and frail, the other eternal and enduring. The tiny one, the story of us, is as brief as the blink of an eye. Yet somehow our infatuation with our little story and our determination to make it as big as we possibly can, blinds us to the massive God Story that surrounds us on every side.”

Stay safe and stand strong. Retief Burger

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