Have you ever heard about the analogy of the waiter from Isaiah 40:31. I bet you haven’t. It’s quite fascinating and I know that you will be blessed.
The bible says in Isaiah 40:31:
“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.”
There are two important things to mention about this passage. I was listening to a sermon by Pastor Adeboye and he mentioned that the closest translation to the first portion of that verse is “those who wait upon the Lord shall exchange their strength.” I have done a little research and I find that several sites agree that exchange is closer to the original text.
This song was bubbling on my heart this late night as I sat on my bed. It’s a beautiful song and the Lord’s name is even more beautiful.
Either way, there is a marked and beautiful difference between renewing and exchanging. When we renew, we get our old changed to new. But when we exchange, we completely give up the old. We give God our weaknesses and He gives us his strength. We give Him our filth, confess that He is God, and He gives us holiness and righteousness. We give Him our flesh and He makes us people of the Spirit.
It is also important to note that the bible talks about those who “wait” upon the Lord. There’s an interesting relationship between a waiter and a customer. Imagine going to a restaurant and being waited upon. Once you step in, your waiter meets and greets you, then they lead you to a seat. Before you receive the menu, the waiter gives you a nice cup of water to cool you down while you make your selection. They take your order to the chef and return with the meal, cooked to your specifications. They constantly check on you, ask how you’re doing, provide what you need, smile, and serve, despite your behavior.
If you’re a good customer (or if you’re American lol) you tip your waiter at the end of your meal, especially if they’ve done a good job. You get up and you leave the restaurant, hopefully having received excellent service from your waiter.
Isaiah 40:31 says that we should wait upon the Lord. We should serve Him the food that He loves to eat and present His dish to His specifications. Thankfully, He’s merciful and He’s kind so whether or not we do a good job, He’s the one customer who will always tip because we cannot enter His presence and leave the same way we came in. And God’s tip is everything that we need in life and more.
God wants us to come into His presence to meet His own needs. He wants us to serve Him with excellence and to give Him the food that He eats. He feasts on our praises, He loves it when we worship and adore Him. He loves us to call Him by His names, to exalt and adore Him above all the earth.
No, that doesn’t make Him a narcissistic God. It’s not narcissism if someone tells me exactly what I am, is it? If someone walks up to me and says “you are Alheri, and senior at college from Nigeria,” Is that narcissistic? You tell me.
Sadly if you’re like me, you often go into God’s presence with your mind full of thoughts and your ears blocked to listening to Him. We go into His presence expecting to speak, speak, and speak some more. This is quite the contrary to the expectation. The waiter listens, speaking and making only the suggestions that will benefit the customer.
When we go into God’s presence and serve Him His food, we can rest assured that He will speak with us because He enjoys our company. He longs to speak with us. We serve Him the appetizer and when it’s so delicious, He pays the wages and gratuity that the restaurant would have paid for a few hours, and He keeps us in his company. It’s like one wealthy customer asking that the restaurant be shut down and that they be served by one particular waiter.
Are you waiting upon God when you enter His presence? Are you giving Him the food that He enjoys eating? Are you being a bad waiter or a good waiter? God will give you a tip regardless, but will He want to shut down the restaurant just to enjoy your service?
My thoughts here are inspired by a sermon titled Prayer Does Not Change God by Pastor E.A. Adeboye.
Featured image from giphy.