“Wait” is one of those words that we all hate hearing but don’t mind saying. We see our time as valuable, or the circumstance as way too critical to be waiting around on somebody else to get their act together.
Sometimes waiting seems impossible
Think about Moses, he had just rescued the children of Israel from famine and torture at the hand of Pharaoh only to bring them up against an obstacle so huge that if God himself didn’t intervene right then, they would definitely die an ugly death. He tells them, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today” (Ex 14:13). It would only seem natural to for the Israelites to become full of fear and start to ask questions of Moses and his ability to hear from God. We so often blast the children of Israel at this point for their unbelief. We wonder, “why would they think God had just rescued them out of Egypt only to forsake them now?”
Waiting increases our faith
Try asking yourself the very same question. Why would God have washed all your sins away, filled you with his spirit, and become your “friend that sticks closer than a brother”, only to forsake you now in your darkest hour? The place of unbelief starts when you feel like the trial or circumstance in your life is beyond God’s control. James says some really, hard to wrap your mind around stuff when he says in James 1:2-4, “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
Some of us are in some really hard to understand situations right now and are wondering if it’s due to God’s will, our bad choices or choices of others, or if it’s just life dealing us a bad hand. I know it seems like the situation is what’s slowly sucking the life out of you right now, but it’s not. It’s your perspective, your lack of belief in a God that can carry you through all things, and bring you out in his time. We’re so busy telling God why we’re miserable, and how He could fix everything if He would just do it this way or that way, and if only He would do it right now. We forget to ask Him if there may be a greater purpose for our suffering and waiting.
Paul said this about our current sufferings and what they do for us, “For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever” (2Cor 4:17-18 NLT).
Waiting is about attitude
I know that some things are very hard to go through, and some of the things we deal with may not be God’s will at all, such as abuse and things of that nature. Just remember this, God has not forgotten about you nor will He ever forget about you. You may or may not be able to fix the situation you are going through right now but have you given the Lord a chance? Don’t answer too quickly with a “yes” just because it’s been going on for years now. It’s not about the amount of time, it’s always about our attitudes. The jerk husband or disrespectful wife, the unsaved kids, the lousy job, the mean kids at school, the unrelenting bills that are piling up, the neighbor that just won’t leave you alone, all of these things are hard to deal with. But God has a plan! He first plans on changing your understanding and then your attitude. If He can get you to understand that there is a plan, your attitude will soon begin to reflect faith. Faith in a God that will never let you drown in your current situation.
Remember this as well. Others go through trials just like you. They hurt, get confused, and start to doubt God. God has called us to help mend the broken hearts of this world. But how can we do that if we don’t believe for ourselves in the God that heals all things? Did you ever think that the situation you are going through can teach you how to help somebody that doesn’t know God and His tender mercies? Paul addresses this in 1Cor 10:12-15. “Don’t be so naive and self-confident. You’re not exempt. You could fall flat on your face as easily as anyone else. Forget about self-confidence; it’s useless. Cultivate God-confidence. No test or temptation that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; he’ll never let you be pushed past your limit; he’ll always be there to help you come through it. So, my very dear friends, when you see people reducing God to something they can use or control, get out of their company as fast as you can. I assume I’m addressing believers now who are mature” (The Message).
“But 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; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Is 40:31 KJV).
Waiting = Faith, Faith = Patience, Patience = Perfection.