I get frustrated waiting on fast food or waiting behind the slow car in the fast lane. Aren’t we all in a rush to get to the next place or the next thing?
My cell phone battery malfunctions at the worst of times. “I just had 34% battery life and now it’s dead!” Waiting for the phone to recharge only takes a few minutes but feels like eons. “Come on!”
We live in one of the most individualistic cultures in the world, which means we want what we want — and we want it now, and it better be quick and easy.
Waiting on God
An impatient mindset often carries over into my spiritual life.
I have a need.
I want the answer yesterday.
“Come on, Lord!”
One of the most oft quoted verses in the Bible is Isaiah 40:31 – “They that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength…”
What does it mean to “wait” on God?
3 Things I’ve Learned About God’s Timing
1. God is never in a Hurry
I’ve come to believe a lot of things about God – He is compassionate, holy, gracious, righteous, forgiving, merciful and loving…AND He is never in a hurry.
* God allowed over 4,000 years between the promise in Genesis of a Saviour and the first Christmas.
* God waited 400 years before answering the Jews’ cries for deliverance from slavery in Egypt.
* God allowed another 40 years of wilderness wanderings after their Exodus.
* Jesus said He is coming again SOON and its been almost 2,000 years since the promise was made. Just how long is soon?
God is not in a hurry and that’s good for you.
2. God is never late.
A man named Lazarus, who was described as “Jesus’ friend,” was deathly sick.
He and his family had watched Jesus perform miracles for people in need and now that he was dying they called for Jesus to help.
He showed up four days after Lazarus’ funeral. He was late.
Lazarus’ family was heartbroken. His sisters said, “If you had been here he would have lived.”
What did Jesus do? When he showed up he raised up Lazarus from the grave. Lazarus lived. The family’s woes turned to wow’s.
Late? By whose timing?
3. God works just in time.
This can be an annoying aspect of God’s patterns but it is true.
When Corrie Ten Boom was a little girl, she went to my father and said, “Daddy, I am afraid that I will never be strong enough to be a martyr for Jesus Christ.”
“Tell me,” said her father, “When we take a train trip to Amsterdam, when do I give you the money for the ticket? Three weeks before?”
“No, Daddy, you give me the money for the ticket just before we get on the train.”
“That is right,” my father said, “and so it is with God’s strength. Our Father in heaven knows when you will need the strength. He will supply all you need—just in time.”
How to WAIT While God Works
Waiting on God is not being passive.
The word for “wait” can correctly be interpreted as “hope.”
A hopeful person is expectant. A pregnant woman is said to be “expecting a baby.” She has to wait for nine months but while she waits she gets busy moving in the direction of her expectation.
A Matter Of Time
The moment my wife Jocelyn learned of her first pregnancy, she began working for our baby’s arrival. She started collecting items she’d need and designated a spare room as “the nursery room.” She picked out new paint colors, new draperies, new lighting, new furniture and we got the room ready.
Jocelyn actively prepared for our baby’s arrival because she knew it was just a matter of time.
That’s what “waiting on God” is like…a matter of time and timing…and in faith working towards what you expect to happen.
What are you waiting for?
APPLICATION: Are you impatient? How does knowing about God’s timing help? Please leave a comment below.
I write to inspire people to be real, grow an authentic faith in Jesus, enjoy healthy relationships and discover their life purpose. If this material is helpful to you, please follow me.
- Subscribe. I’ll put helpful content into your email box early Mondays and Thursdays, as well as upcoming events at North Pointe Community Church, Edmonton, Alberta.
- Follow on Twitter. I daily tweet info I think you’ll be interested in.
- Friend on Facebook. If you “like” my page, let me know you found me here.
- Connect on Linkedin. I like this because it reminds me what people think I’m good at.