Written by: Vivian Wilson
Wait for it…some genius(?) ad guy came up with that, (though I can’t even remember what he wanted me to buy). But, seriously, who ever really wants to wait, especially in this culture of instant gratification?
I’ve been thinking about this discipline of waiting for a while now because it seems like I have been in a “wait mode” that has gone into overtime. And, frankly, I’m tired of waiting and am ready to see something happen in at least a couple of areas in my life. For the most part I am a patient person, but I don’t like waiting.
Some times of waiting are easy, like waiting for Christmas, or a visit from a loved one, or the birth of a child, or a bus. Others are not so easy. They can cause us to be irritable, impatient, anxious, negative, or even depressed. For instance, waiting on a prodigal child to come home, a positive response to your resume, or physical healing. Why is waiting so difficult? Because it is uncomfortable and we are not in control.
So, the question is, “Why would God have us wait”? Once again, God gave me a picture using my experiences in boot camp and marathon training to help me understand. (I hope you aren’t tired of “marathon lessons” yet.) The goal in each is to get physically stronger and to build endurance. Left on my own, I would quit the exercise before I reached the limit of my capability. Why? Because it doesn’t feel good. I needed a coach, someone to push me past what I thought my limit was. As I kept going, not quitting, even when I thought I couldn’t do any more, I learned that I could do more and go farther. I gained strength and stamina.
This same principle applies to my spiritual growth as well. God has me wait for answers because He is building my faith and trust in Him as He is building my character. He knows my limitations better than I know them. He supplies the strength and grace that I need to keep on waiting.
So how would God have me wait? He would have me wait with a quiet confidence that expects and trusts Him to answer and end the waiting. I am to have a grateful attitude and to surrender my will and desire His. He would want me to do these things even when I don’t feel like it. Because as He nudges me on in love, past what I think I can do, His joy and peace replace my fear and anxiety. My heart responds in worship and praise for my God who is present and working in the waiting.
Phil.4:4-7 “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
These things I know: Nothing is impossible or too difficult for God. Luke 1:37 He will meet my needs. Matt.6:25-34 He hears my prayer. 1Jn.5:14-15 He is kind, compassionate, merciful, and gracious. Ps.103 He loves me more than I can comprehend. Eph.3:14-21 He is never late with His perfect plan. Ps.33:11 He will give me all the grace and strength that I need in the waiting. Heb.4:16, Ps.73:16, Phil.4:13
While waiting is painful sometimes and the time of relief is not in sight, yet will I trust Him and thank Him for His loving care of me as I wait with confident expectation.
a work in progress,