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Time to Fly - A Devotion

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Isaiah 40:28-31 (Amplified)
Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, does not faint or grow weary; there is no searching of His understanding. He gives power to the faint and weary, and to him who has no might He increases strength [causing it to multiply and making it to abound]. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and [selected] young men shall feebly stumble and fall exhausted; But those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired.

If I walk out the door into the front yard encountering a gentle breeze standing there I lift up my hands with stretched out arms and begin furiously flapping, I will not fly. I am not a bird. I do not have wings to catch the wind as it passes by. My body was created by God to grab hold of gravity with feet firmly planted to the earth which it is quite astute at doing. Okay, some parts may be “too” good at doing especially with age. I do not have feathers that lay flat and aerodynamically on my body. So it would be safe for one to assume that those who wait for the Lord should not expect to lift their “wings” and mount up as eagles…right? If I want His Strength and Power to permeate my life, it is of the utmost importance that rather than jumping off the roof of my house in blind faith that I allow the Lord to instruct me on the finer points of faith in flight.

In the wee hours of early morning, I let our little dog outside. Most of the time, I go back inside and wait for him to come to the door barking to let him in. But for some reason, I was compelled to wait for him that day. I strained my eyes to adjust to the dark with one small light shining on a corner of the yard where he was walking in the grass. It was very quiet as if a hush fell over the surrounding trees and wildlife even the crickets fell silent. Then I heard it, the powerful flapping of wings that settled effortlessly in a moment. When I looked for the sound, I found a very large great-horned owl sitting on the fence post looking hungrily at our eight-pound dog. He was perched over searching the ground getting ready to move when the dog and I hastened for the house. He flew away. His dark form quietly left as quickly as he had come with only the sound of his rushing and powerful wings blended into the darkness. Well, that a one frightened dog owner’s frantic beating heart thankful that the dog had not become its meal. I believe that the Lord searches through the darkness of each night looking for those who are weak, weary and broken. Unlike the owl, God is not looking for someone to prey upon but those who are ready to be lifted up. Those who are ready to release their heavy burdens and cast away their cares. He wants to change and renew their strength and power. He wants to lift them up moving them closer to Himself (on wings as eagles). The Lord wants you to run the race of faith without falling. He empowers you to never become weary in well doing for His Cause. You can walk in faith and not be faint or become tired of serving God but rather long for His Presence. Are you ready to leave darkness behind? Are you ready to release your heavy burden? Do you want to be strong and powerful? It is time to fly!

Psalm 55:4-8 (NLT)
My heart pounds in my chest. The terror of death assaults me. Fear and trembling overwhelm me, and I can’t stop shaking. Oh, that I had wings like a dove; then I would fly away and rest! I would fly far away to the quiet of the wilderness. How quickly I would escape—far from this wild storm of hatred.

When the storms of life come or the enemy assaults us, we begin looking for an escape. Frantically running from place to place, searching for a way out of our problems and despair.

Psalm 55:16-19 (NLT)
But I will call on God, and the LORD will rescue me. Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress, and the LORD hears my voice. He ransoms me and keeps me safe from the battle waged against me, though many still oppose me. God, who has ruled forever, will hear me and humble them. For my enemies refuse to change their ways; they do not fear God.

So we call on God and the Lord to rescue us. We do not want to go through hard times or over the mountain, but ask the Lord to lift us up over such hardship. God will humble your enemies. But before that, He must humble you. Say what? This isn’t about me. It is about the Lord fighting my battles, overcoming my enemies, bringing me comfort and calming the storm. You are God’s Special Treasure. Like the Children of Israel, He wants to carry you out of captivity into freedom. Jesus died to make this happen. God carried His People out of captivity and right to Himself. (Exodus 19:3-6) However, something went wrong along the way. God took care of His Children all the way out of captivity straight through the wilderness. But they became fat and unruly. Heavy, plump and stuffed they decided to abandon God as if it was of their own doing despite all of the miraculous signs and wonders they had witnessed. (Deuteronomy 32:9-15) They chose to ignore God’s Supply and Provision throughout their journey even His Protection. (Deuteronomy 29:4-6) Why do we forget God so easily? Then cry out in despair as if it was the Lord who left us rather our fat, unruly, heavy, plump and overstuffed ego that allowed pride to pull us from the Presence and Provision of God. If you are not flying today, it is time to inspect the baggage in your life. You will never fly with a sin covering of pride weighing you down. Pride looks at how far we have come and pats itself on the back. Humility sees how far we have come thankful for the Lord’s Intervention but then immediately looks up knowing there so much more to discover. It is God who lifted you up when you were broken hearted and it is the Lord who carried you through. (Obadiah 1:3-4) We must forget if we will soar once more.

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!

I must never forget the good things that God does for me. But what should I do? Where is my place in this process? I am told to praise Him with my whole heart. Ok, I got that but what else. There is nothing else friend. Humility allows us to wait on a God who does not need our help. He does not need you to lift Him up just praise His Name with your life entirely. He does everything else. He forgives us. He heals us. He redeems us. He crowns us. He blesses us providing everything we need even prospering our soul. He even gives us the strength to wait on Him with great restraint as our flesh cries out to move on without the Lord. Pride tells us that we could do a better job but it is a lie. All we know how to do is die. We try to live and prolong our life but without surrendering our life to Jesus Christ as the Way – you will surely die. “I waited patiently for the LORD to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD.” Psalm 40:1-3 The Lord is waiting to lift you up today. He is ready to renew your strength and release His Power in your life. Are you ready to let go? Surrender releases us from here and now to reach the “Highest Heavens” stepping into His Presence.

Psalm 89:13-17 (NLT)
Powerful is your arm! Strong is your hand! Your right hand is lifted high in glorious strength. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne. Unfailing love and truth walk before you as attendants. Happy are those who hear the joyful call to worship, for they will walk in the light of your presence, LORD. They rejoice all day long in your wonderful reputation. They exult in your righteousness. You are their glorious strength. It pleases you to make us strong.

God wants to make you strong. It pleases Him to do so. But you have to stop relying on personal strength and fortitude to take us where the Lord is. There is One Way. His Name is Jesus Christ. You cannot fit through His Way carrying all the dead baggage of your life. You must release this life to take up your Cross and follow Jesus Christ. This means that you have to give it all to Jesus Christ. You don’t have to scratch and claw your way to the top any longer. The Lord lifts us out of our situation by placing our feet on the Rock which is the foundation of faith that produces confident hope which is an anchor for our soul. (Psalm 143:13-19) Why would God do such a marvelous work in our life? He loves us. Why help such a rebellious people? He has great compassion for us in our helpless inability. But God is not going to fight you to lift you up – you must surrender your heart and life to the Lord – then He will lift you up on wings as eagles. We do fly through life but rather God lifts us up just as the wind carries an eagle. We are powerless to fly high above our problems and circumstances but He will lift the humble into His Presence where you find everything we need to serve the Lord in all seasons. It is about total and complete dependency on the Lord with humility that allows us access to righteousness and all that He is! Righteousness is in the Highest Heavens. (Psalm 71:19-21) The Lord wants to take you there. Are you willing to go? Do you long for the Lord to lift you up today? It is time to lay your life down, and He will lift you up!

Matthew 11:28-30 (NLT)
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

Human pride tells us to carry yokes and heavy burdens that we do have to. Arrogance tells us that no one will take of us if we don’t take care of ourselves. Silly people, Jesus said, “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens and I WILL give you rest.” When was the last time you took the weight of your world, and asked Jesus to carry it for a while? Yeah, I didn’t think so. Take my yoke upon you. (Psalm 103:1-5) Jesus wants to teach us to depend on Him for everything that we need. Otherwise the burdens of life will keep us from following Jesus and finding rest for our souls. His Yoke is easy and His Burden is light! This allows every heavy heart to be lifted up and experience the Love of God in the midst of problems and uncertainty because we are confidently hopeful in the faith we have in Jesus! God helps those who realize that they cannot help themselves. Not because, He didn’t love them before but because they finally let go of their way to do it His Way. The Lord loves those who choose to be godlike following His Word, doing what it says, and walking out life His Way! He lifts these people up! It is all about humble beginnings that lead to so much more! “But if you pray to God and seek the favor of the Almighty, and if you are pure and live with integrity, He will surely rise up and restore your happy home. And though you started with little, you will end with much. (Job 8:5-7)

Matthew 5:5 (NLT) God blesses those who are humble for they will inherit the whole earth.

Those who release human pride and grab hold of humility giving their whole life to the Lord to do with it as He sees fit will receive great blessing. Humility allows us to be lead and teachable which are required to be faithful. (Psalm25:8-10) Humility lets us see the Hand of God at work because we are watching and waiting expecting Him to come. (Psalm 69:32) Humility allows us close proximity to God. (Psalm 138:6-7) God supports the humble. (Psalm147:6) The humble have victory. (Psalm 149:4-5) He is gracious to the humble. (Proverbs 3:34) The humble receive fresh joy! (Isaiah 29:19) Humility gives us full access to God through His Son, Jesus. (Isaiah 57:15) God always blesses the humble for He has great love and compassion for those who choose to give this life away! (Isaiah 66:3)

James 4:10 (NLT) Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.

Stop struggling to find your way to the top. Sometimes the Spirit of God will take you to the valley to find new life. Valleys are humbling as we realize that we are powerless without the Lord. (Ezekiel 37:1-5) But the Valley of Weeping gives way to renewing and refreshing joy! (Psalm 84:6) Do not give up but give in. Be humble in giving your whole life to the Lord allowing Him to lift you up! “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (I Peter 5:6-7) Humility takes our eyes off of us and our problems so we can focus on Jesus and what He wants us to do which is following His Way! (Isaiah 58:4) God wants to lift you up. He wants you where He is! Stop struggling today! Let God be your strength!

Luke 18:10-14 (NLT)
“Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not a sinner like everyone else. For I don’t cheat, I don’t sin, and I don’t commit adultery. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.’ “But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’ I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Who will you be today? What will you choose? I choose to be humble. I am ready to fly high above the worries and cares of this world. I want to be where He is. This world has nothing for me. It just weighs me down! Not anymore because it is time to fly!

Ephesians 4:1-3 (NLT)
Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.

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