Growing up, the last thing I wanted to hear was my mom telling me, “Not now or wait.” This can lead to anger, frustration and even despair. This “weakness” of expectation accompanies most of us into adulthood. We may not react with the same aggression as children, but most of us still refuse to wait for what we want. And our modern society has made the situation even worse. We want everything done quickly and new devices are constantly being developed to meet these needs increasing our impatience. We are not used to waiting, and although our technology meets our immediate needs, we are less inclined to wait.
This is our dilemma as Christians. While society is doing everything it can to make our lives easier and faster, God is working on a very different schedule. In his opinion, there is nothing wrong with waiting. Waiting can even be a positive asset that He often uses to make us more like His Son. Something happens when nothing happens – that means God uses waiting to change us, God works while we wait. The story of Abraham waiting for a promise to be fulfilled is an example. Hebrews 6:15 says “Then Abraham waited patiently, and he received what God had promised” Despite his advanced age, Abraham received an inheritance through his wife Sarah. This waiting period lasted 25 years. Sarah eventually gave birth to Isaac “the LORD visited Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did to Sarah as he had spoken.”
Even our Lord Jesus Christ waited to begin his ministry, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in the form of a body, like a dove; and a voice came from heaven: “You are my beloved Son; I am well pleased with you.’ Jesus, when He began His ministry, was about thirty years old…” (Luke 3:21-23). Three years of his life were filled by sitting with his disciples to prepare them when he was not with them. If we search the scriptures we’ll see that some of our heroes of faith like Joseph waited in prison for a purpose, Moses, Caleb and Joshua waited in the desert for the promise of God. Job was Waiting Through Suffering, David Waited to Be King at the Appointed Time, Daniel Waited for Breakthrough in Prayer.
Someone may say, do we really have to wait for God? I want to point out something very important, as human beings we only see things through our eyes, but God sees everything in His perfect perspective because God is perfect. He knows exactly what is best for us and prepares us all. Think about it, if God already knows what is best for us, then why is it important for us to have control over everything in our life? Why should we not allow God to do what is best? Luke 12:7 says “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” God knows the number of our hair strands, so how can He not know what is best for us? So do we really have to wait for God? Yes, we should!
You know, waiting for God has no time limit, wait as long as it takes. God will do what he wants to do no matter what. In Isaiah 46:10 God says: “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please’.” Understanding God’s authority will help us be patient as we confidently await His work in our lives. He may not respond to us immediately or even give us what we think we need, but He will give us the best when it is best for us. That’s for sure. God’s timing is always perfect, and often it’s not as long as we think it should be. The Bible tells us in 2 Peter that a day is like a thousand years for the Lord. A thousand years could also be a day. His time is not defined by our time I assure you. Most of the time we give up our waiting on the Lord because we run out of patience. Of course, I am guilty of this; I’m sure there are times in my life when if I had waited a little longer for God to complete His work, maybe the result is even better than I thought. It’s hard to remember that God has no end and will make sure everything is in order. It’s all for his glory and there’s no greater reason. Waiting will help us stay humble and put our trust in God. Here’s a list of things to do while waiting,
- Pray for guidance, pray earnestly, and pray for God’s will to be done. Ask God to give you the peace of mind you need and the faith you need.
- Study God’s Word, especially His promises. He will follow you while you wait.
- Communication with the Holy Spirit.
- Stay focused on Him and His Word and the reasons for your time of waiting will be made clear.
- Worship him, learn to sing hymns and hymns. When I’m sad, I listen to gospel songs. I let it flow through my mind, heart and soul and as I do I find myself singing and praising God.
- Make a “Blessings list”, writing down all the good things that God has given you. Keep the bill in hand and refer to it as often as needed. God will do the same with the waiting time. This time is no different than other times.
- Start a daily “Thank you list”. Write down everything you will be thankful for each day, even the smallest things.
The waiting room can be tough, but the benefits of waiting are immeasurable. Trusting God in good times is easy, but waiting for Him to work in difficult times is difficult, but these are important times to build faith, increase our trust in Him, and grow spiritually.
So Father in your name I pray for everyone in the waiting room that they trust you as you take them through this process, strengthen their faith in you as they continue to wait for the right time and when it comes our test will turn out to be testimonies. Amen.