Summary: Isiah compares us to eagles (40:31) and calls us to soar to new heights in terms of our faith and commitment---consider the characterisitcs of an eagle.
The King of Birds!
Like an eagle that stirs up its nest and hovers over its young, that spreads its wings to catch them and carries them on its pinions, so the Lord alone did lead him (Deuteronomy 32:11,12).
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:31).
“Bless the Lord, O my soul and forget not all his benefits…He satisfies my desires with good things, so that my youth is renewed like the eagle’s (Psalm 013:2,5).
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN TO PRARIE DU CHIEN, WISCONSIN? It’s right on the Mississippi River, near the border of Iowa. My wife and I visited there because we had been told that it was one of the places where eagles lived and mated. It was a beautiful Spring day and we decided to have a picnic lunch in a park that overlooked the river. As we were eating, suddenly we saw them---eagles in flight---sweeping over the palisades---bald eagles at that! These magnificent creatures left us spellbound. There is something majestic and mysterious about our national bird.
The eagle is known as the king of birds. It has some interesting features and traits that we would do well to evaluate and emulate.
First, consider the NEST. It’s usually built on the edge of a great precipice. There the mother bird hatches her young and there for a time she nourishes and cherishes them. The nest is made of thorns, jagged stones, and sharp bones. It is covered with wool, feathers and furs from animals she has killed. When she “stirs up” the nest, the eaglets begin to feel like leaving. She also prods them with her sharp talons and then a day comes when she sweeps them out with her powerful wings and casts them over the ledge of rock. Screaming with terror, they drop like stones. But just as they are about to be dashed to pieces, she swoops down below them and bears them up. She will continue this process until they learn to fly.
In a similar manner, God deals with His people. He cherishes them, but He also challenges them. He protects and provides for them, by He also subjects them to the disciplines of disturbance—so that they can learn how to fly!
The eaglet that whimpers, “I can’t” dies on the rocks and adds its carcass to the carrion already there. But the eaglet that attempts to fly, when flight seems impossible, soon finds itself “lord of the blue.”
Secondly, consider its WINGS. An eagle is built for flight---upward flight. They soar above the storms. They keep flying until they are safe in the sunshine.
In like manner, the child of God should face the darkness of storms with courage and determination. His prayer and faith can penetrate the clouds and bring him into the glory of the Son’s presence.
The wings make it possible for the eagle to perform with great speed and strength. Spiritual eagles can perform with equal speed and strength. God has promised to supply it. The believer quickly flees temptation and God’s strength is made perfect in his weakness. These wings make it possible for the believer to go swiftly to the aid of others.
In Psalm 103:5 we read about our youth being renewed like that of the eagle. The Psalmist is referring to the molting of birds, which, in most cases, takes place annually, in which they cast their old feathers off and get a new plumage.
The third amazing feature of eagles has to do with their EYES. They are known for their keen eyesight. The expression “eagle eye” describes quite accurately one of the unique characteristics of this fascinating bird of prey. The eagle’s eyesight is three to four times stronger than that of humans.
Spiritual eagles should have keen eyesight also. They are to keep their eyes centered on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2). They are to overlook the faults in others. They should be quick to see the needs of others as well. And, of course, they should be able to spot the enemy readily. This is often referred to as “spiritual insight.”
Another aspect of eagle life has to do with their HABITAT. They build on high ledges and live apart in the high places because they are solitary birds. Spiritual eagles pursue the lofty summits as well---they separate themselves from the principles, values, and standards of the world. They lay up treasures in heaven, not on the earth.
Joseph Parker, a great English preacher once said, “An eagle does not roost in a sparrow’s nest.” And neither does a child of God! God has designed and empowered us to be like the eagle---ever ascending in our faith.