Back a Little Ways

Why do you way is hidden from the Lord; 
my cause is disregarded by my God? 
Do you not know? Have you not heard? 
The Lord is the everlasting God, 
the Creator of the ends of the earth. 
He will not grow tired or weary, 
and his understanding no one can fathom.
Isaiah 40:27-28

The last month has been spent pruning, preparing and packing to put our house on the market. As extra furniture has been cleared out and closets have been cleaned, I've stumbled across some unusual items.

The mate to the sock I threw away 6 months ago...
A scary looking, seriously fossilized bug or two...
The cap to a lip gloss I no longer own...
A remote to one of our TVs...
Gloves I thought I'd lost...

Making these little discoveries, has reminded me of one of my favorite ways to read the Bible. I go find a scripture I really like and read the verses around it. I often discover something totally unexpected when I do this. 

The verses above appear just before these well-loved words in scripture:

He gives strength to the weary 
and increases the power of the weak. 
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 now grow weary, 
they will walk and not be faint. 
Isaiah 40:29-31

Soaring on wings like eagles and running without getting weary is the stuff superheroes are made of. It's no wonder I, along with many others, likes this passage. But when I back up a few verses I pause.

Maybe sometimes the reason life seems hard is because I spend more time questioning God than trusting Him. I try to walk in my own strength or figure out problems on my own. Before I can walk without growing faint, I have to run into the arms of Jesus. He is the giver of my strength.

So glad I went back a little ways...

Why not go find one of your favorite verses and read the surrounding text? Could you come back and share with us what encouragement you found back a little ways?

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