Who likes to wait? No one I know.
It’s something we have to do nearly every day. Wait in line at the store, sit in traffic, wait for a package to arrive, wait to get the results of a test, wait for a table at a restaurant, or wait on hold on the phone (that may be the worst!)
When we have to wait it means staying right where we are. We can’t get on to the next thing. All action is stalled and it can seem like a big waste of time.
And sometimes in our lives we hit a season of waiting. We’re in an in-between period or we can’t move ahead for some reason. Maybe we’re anticipating or expecting something to happen, but we don’t know when – or maybe if – it will.
Do you remember specific seasons of waiting in your life? My most memorable waiting season was when we were trying to have children. It took nearly two years to get pregnant with our first daughter, Angel, who was stillborn, then another two years for our now 19-year-old daughter.
I’m reminded of several well-known Bible characters who endured a season of waiting. Abraham and Sarah waited many years for Isaac to be born, faithfully believing God’s promise even as they grew old. What about the two years Joseph spent in prison waiting and hoping that the butler would mention him to Pharaoh? Or David who was anointed king of Israel by the prophet Samuel years before he actually gained the throne?
God has much to teach us in our waiting seasons. As we learn those lessons, here are a few things we can remember.
1. We are strengthened as we wait on the Lord.
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. ~Isaiah 40:31
The promised strength and the mounting up with wings and the running come after the waiting. We like to focus on that last part, but the waiting comes first. With God, time spent waiting is not wasted, but is preparing us for what’s ahead.
2. Learning to wait can be part of God’s good plan for us.
The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord. ~Lamentations 3:25-26
Don’t we seek Him more in the waiting seasons? When we feel like we’re in a good place in life and we know where we’re headed, we can tend to rely on ourselves for what we need. If God’s allowed us to enter a season of waiting, we can know it’s part of His plan and seek to learn the lessons He has for us there.
3. We wait for the Lord because we need His help and guidance.
Our soul waiteth for the Lord: he is our help and our shield. ~Psalm 33:20
Have you ever plunged ahead and done what you thought was right instead of waiting for that peace in your soul before you moved forward? That’s one way to learn about waiting since the results usually aren’t good! We can only accomplish His purposes as we rest in His timing and recognize that we need His help.
4. While we wait, we can find hope in His Word.
I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. ~Psalm 130:5
This happened to me while I was putting this post together!! Reading Bible verses that talk about waiting on the Lord helped me to see the value in those seasons. We know that going to God’s Word will bring encouragement and wisdom. Let’s memorize and meditate on Scripture that points our hearts and minds to His promises.
5. Waiting on God will ultimately bring Him glory.
I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints. ~Psalm 52:9
How exciting it is when we can look back over our lives and see how waiting on God paid off. Often we can see how God moved at just the right time and in a way that can’t be explained except for Him. We see these things more clearly once we’ve come through a waiting season, but it can still be hard to remember them when the next waiting season comes along!
Here’s one final bit of encouragement, should you be in the midst of a waiting season today.
I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord. ~Psalm 40:1-3
The new song?? That comes after the waiting, after the horrible pit and the miry clay. Nobody wants to sign up for those, but God knows how it ends. We all want the new song, but it only comes after the waiting. So as we wait for our new song, may God give us the grace and peace we need to wait on Him!
- When You’re in the Pit, Look Forward to Your New Song
- God Will Prepare the Way
- Trusting His Grace When I Can’t See His Face